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Euphemia and the Goth, with the Acts of martyrdom of the confessors 
of Edessa ; edited and examined by F. C. Burkitt. 

Burkitt, Francis Crawford, ed. 1864-1935, 

London and Oxford, Published for the Text and translation society by Williams and 

Norgate, 1913. 

http://hdl.handle.net/2027/njp.3210107598Q118 



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TEXT AND TRANSLATION SOCIETY. 



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President 
Professor F. C, BURKITT, Cambridge. 

Vic e-P resident 
Mr. NORMAN MCLEAN, University Lecturer in Aramaic,, Cambridge. 

Hon. Treasurer 
Dr. C. D. GINSBURG. 

Committee 
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Dr. J. SUTHERLAND BLACK, Joint Editor of the Encyclopaedia Biblka, 
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of Religions, Gc-nville and Caius College, Cambridge. 
Dr. A. COWLEY, Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford. 
The Rev, Professor S. R. DRIVER, Oxford. 
Mr. A. G. ELLIS, India Office, 

The Very Rev. J. AKMITAGE ROBINSON, Dean of Wells. 
Mr. J. F. STENNING Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford. 
Mr. W. ALD1S WRIGHT, Vice-Master of Trinity College, Cambridge. 



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TEXT AND TRANSLATION SOCIETY. 

Established for the purpose of editing and translating Oriental Texts 
chiefly preserved in the British Museum. 

Volumes already issued. 

THE SIXTH BOOK OK THE SELECT LETTERS OF SEVERUS, PATRIARCH OF 

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THE Canons of athanasius OF ALEXANDRIA, in Arabic and Coptic, 
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Edited and Translated from the Palimpsest in the British Museum 
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tius. 1912. 

EUI'HEMIA and the goTH, -with the Acts of the Confessors of Edessa. 
Edited and examined by F. C. Burkiti, 191 3. 



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/« Preparation. 

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Press. Vol. Ill: in Preparation. Edited and Translated by the Rev. 
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EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH 



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UPHEMIA AND THE GOTH 



WITH THE ACTS OF MARTYRDOM 

OF THE CONFESSORS OF EDESSA 

EDITED AND EXAMINED BY 



F. C. BURKITT 

Hon. D.D. Edinburgh, Dublin, St. Andrews; D. Theol, h,c. Breslau. 



PUBLISHED FOR THE TEXT AND TRANSLATION SOCIETY 

UY 

WILLIAMS AND NORGATE 

14 Henrietta Street, Covent Garden, London 

and 7 Broad Street, Oxford 

1913 



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DER EVANGELISCH-THEOLOGISCHEN 

FAKULTAT DER SCHLESISCHEN 
FRIEDR1CH-WILHELMS-UNIVERSITAT 

ZU BRESLAU 

GEW1DMET 

ALS ZEICHEN AUFRICHTIGSTER WERTSCHATZUNG 

UND WARMSTEN DANKES 



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FEINTED BV E. J. BRILL, LEYDEN (HOLLAND). 



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CONTENTS. 



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Page 

INTRODUCTION I 

Historicity of the Martyrdoms 

Objections stated 5 

The Martyrs themselves historical ..,,.,,.. IO 

Theophilus 12 

Comparison of Skmona &• Guria with SharM .... 13 

Interpolations in the Text 16 

Unconventional picture of the Persecution in Edegsa . . 1 8 

The Tortures 21 

Alleged Anachronisms ......,,,..,♦ 22 

Method of Compilation 23 

The Paganism of the pagans in Skarbd and in the Dio- 
cletian Martyrdoms 26 

Date of the Martyrdoms 

Days of the month . * 29 

Days of the week and the years . 30 

The contemporary Emperors and Bishops 31 

Certain of the dates spurious 33 

Place of the Martyrdoms 

Authorities 35 

Gates of Edessa identified , 36 

Rahmam's List of Churches and Convents ...... 38 

Joshua Stylites' account of the Siege in 503 40 

Beth Alah Kikla and the Shrine 42 

Plan of Edessa ....,., , .».■'«» . 46 



® 



Euphemia and the Goth 

Arguments against the Syriac origin of the tale examined. 48 
Characteristic passages compared ......... 5 1 



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XH CONTENTS. 

Date and character of the tale . 
The Goths at Edessa . . , , 
Are the Confessors "Dioscuri"? 

A rationalistic explanation 

The fate of the Confessors' Coffin 



On the Syriac Text 



Euphemia . . . 
Shmona and Guria 
Habbib .... 



Page 

57 
58 
61 
62 
66 



70 
78 
85 



TRANSLATIONS 

Shmona and Curia ,,,..,., 90 

Habbib 112 

Euphemia and the Goth 129 

Appendix I: The Merchant of Harran. 154 

„ II: On the date of the capture of Jerusalem by ijaladin 160 

NOTES 

To Shmona and Guria 163 

To Habbib. 172 

To Euphemia ^ ... 183 

Index 186 



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SYRIAC TEXTS 

Shmona and Guria , -\^ 

Habbib q^ 

Euphemia ■ ^^g 

The Merchant of Harran , * s-| 



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ERRATA. 

p. 53, 1. io for promites read promises 
p. 73, L 15 „ thans n thanks 

p. 73 , 1. 28 „ charteed „ chanced 



p. Uk ,; ■<_-, for oaijcocdl mrf qailfloocu 

and add note to 1. 6 QOiAA0Or<Ll] N (Hiias CvLi ' see P- 175- 

p. r^l n for iwsoiur^ rcrti/ iviJrflAvi.rC' 

p. -\*ji 24 ^ ,.■,.- KJvttMu raai K'AhjJUa* 

p. -**" (n yio^ Nf p. M#rf j.»j p. 72 

p* VJ30 1 5 ,/<»' I read 2 

p. rii-n f or oJrUkAli^l read ,=4^4^.1 



p. Aji-s /«*" Avian ""^ Au=l 



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INTRODUCTION. 



On the West side of the city of Urfa, the ancient 
Edessa, outside the walls, to the North of the Citadel 
with the great twin pillars, lies the Convent of S, Sergius, 

00 

containing the reputed grave of Ephraim Syrus. Behind 

CO 

the Convent is a rounded hill, now for the most part 

O 

cultivated, which forms a sort of step to the bare heights 
beyond. Somewhere to the North of this hillj across 
the modern bed of the river Daisan, must have been 

rsi 
o 

the spot known in ancient times as Beth Alah Kikla. 
On that spot, just over sixteen hundred years ago, two 
Christian martyrs, named Shmona and Guria, were exe- 
cuted together. Less than a year afterwards another 
Christian, a Deacon named Habbib, was burnt alive not 
far from the West Gate of the city, It was shortly 
before the publication of the Edict of toleration for 
Christians, and Habbib was the last victim in Edessa. 
The three martyrs were buried together, and (in later 
times at least) their bones were preserved in the same 
Coffin. Over the Coffin a church was built, known to 
succeeding generations as the Shrine of the Confessors 
{Beth Maudiane). At this Shrine, about a century after 
the martyrdoms, a notable miracle was believed to have 
been performed by the virtue of the Confessors for the 
benefit of one Euphemia, a well-born girl from Edessa 
who had been betrayed by a Goth, a soldier in the 
Byzantine service. 



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2 INTRODUCTION- 

The texts edited in this volume give the story of 
the Martyrdoms and of the Miracle in the original 
language and in what is believed to be as near as pos- 
sible the original forms. Of these, the story of Euphemia 
and the Goth was published for the first time in the 
original Syriac by F. Nau in the Revue de I? Orient 
Chretien, vol. XV (1910), pp. 66 — J2, 173 — iSi, with a 
French translation (pp. 182 — 191), as I discovered when 
this book was already in print. The Martyrdom of 
Shmona and Guria was first published in Syriac by 
Rahmani in 1899, and that of Habbib by Cureton, in 
the book known as Ancient Syriac Documents, in 1864. 

i-H 

Last year, in 191 1, my friend Professor Ernst v. 

6. 

Dobschutz, of Breslau, edited from the collections of 

rsi 

Oscar v. Gebhardt and his own researches the Greek 
and other Versions of these three documents 1 ), a most 
valuable and instructive work, which the present volume 
will by no means supersede. The relation in which the 
two works stand to one another is best explained by 
the note which stands on the last page of Professor v. 
Dobschiitz's book. When I was at Breslau for the Cen- 
tenary of the University, in August, 191 1, and for the 
first time heard that these documents were being edited, 
I found that v. Gebhardt had been unaware of the 
existence of a Syriac text of Euphemia and that Prof, 
v. Dobschutz had not subsequently come across it. It 
was too late to insert it, for the book was already 



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1) The full title is: Die Akten der Edessenischen Bekenoer GurJAs, 
Samonas und AbjBOS aus dem Nachlass von Oscar von Gebhardt 
herausgegeben von Ernst von Dobschutz (Leipzig, Hinrichs, 1911). 
Textt und Unttrsuchungen (3rd Series) 37^ I quote the book as v. 

Dobschutz. 



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INTRODUCTION. 3 

passed for press, so all that could be done was to add 
a Note (p. 264), in which v. Dobschiitz says with refe- 
rence to his statement on p. L that no Syriac text of 
Euphemia was known: "Durch Professor F, C. Burkitt 
werde ich nachtraglich darauf aufmerksam, dass doch 
ein syrischer Text des Thauma in Br. Mus. add. 14649 
{9. Jahrh,} Bl, I I4 a vorliegt (s. Wright's Catalogue III 
H09 b ). Die hoffentlich bald zu erwartende Ausgabe von 
Professor Burkitt wird zeigen, ob es sich dabei um das 
Original oder um Obersetzung aus dern Griechischen 
handelt, wie sichcrlich bei manchen andern Texten 
dieser Handschrift". 

The preparation of this present volume has taken 
longer than I anticipated, but it could never have been 
published at all if it had not been preceded by the 
labours of v. Gebhardt and v. Dobschiitz. I had known 
of the Syriac text of Euphemia for some time and had 
intended to publish it, but I had also become aware 
of some of the complexity of form exhibited by the 
Greek versions and despaired of finding time to inves- 
tigate the matter adequately. All this has now been 
done, and done so well that there is no need to go 
over the work again. The relation of the Greek texts 
to one another, their relative value, the reconstruction 
of the two recensions, — on all these points I can only 
express my gratitude to my predecessors and my ad- 
miration of the skill and thoroughness with which their 
work has been carried out. 

But on two important points I remain unconvinced, 
and it is with these two points that my book is mainly 
concerned. I venture to regard the Syriac text of the 
story of Euphemia as primitive and the Greek published 



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4 JNTRODUCTION. 

by v. Dobschutz as altogether secondary and derivative '). 
And further, I desire to set forth at some length the 
reasons which still lead me to consider the story of the 
martyrdoms of Shmona and Guria, and of Habbib as 
genuine history, as being in all essentials the work of 
an eyewitness. The investigation leads to some rather 
complicated questions of chronology, of the topography 
of Edessa, and of the exegesis of the Acts of martyr- 
dom. I can only hope that some of the interest which 
I have felt in the work may be communicated to my 
readers. 



i) J am glad, to find that Prof, Nau (p. 65) also regards the Syriae as 
the original, but it is evident that he only had access to the inferior 
Greek MSS of the tale (see his ed,, p, 182, note 7, and p, 18S, note 1). 



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ON THE HISTORICITY OF THE 
EDESSENE MARTYRS, 



The object of the following pages is to maintain the 
general historicity of the Acts of Shmona and Guria 
and of Habbib, as recorded in the documents printed 
in this book. That such a defence is necessary will be 
made clear by the following extracts from v. Dobschutz's 
chapter on the Historical Value of these Acts '). 

"The Acts 1 ', says v. Dobschiitz, "give themselves out 
as the work of Theophilus, a Roman official then living 
in Edessa. 

"The Patriarch Rahmani has energetically championed 
the complete genuineness of the Acts; a similar verdict 

1/1 

before and after his time has been given by Baronius, 
Mbsinger, Bedjarij Bickell, R. Duval, Mkertschian, Cony- 

o 

beare, Burkitt On the other hand A. Heisenberg (Byz. 
Zeitschrift IX, 190 1, 581/) has brought forward the 
historical difficulties and Th. Nbldeke has pointed out 
the worthlessness {den geschichtlichen Unweri) of the 
whole group of documents, which appears most clearly 
when they are examined together 2 ). One may confi- 



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1) v. Debschiit^ pp. xnv — xlix, I add a few criticisms by the way 
in square brackets. 

2) [Th. Noldeke in Strassburggr Festschrift znr XLVI Versammiung 
Dtutuhtr Fhilologtn (1901), pp. 13 — 22]. 



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6 INTRODUCTION. 

dently maintain that from one and the same pen came 
first our two Acts, and then the Acts of Sharbel and 
of Barsamya, the scene of which is laid in the time of 
Trajan, There is indeed a reference to these at the end 
of Habbib, but they represent a yet further stage of 
development '). Sharbel is actually cited in Barsamya. 
"It is possible, even to a certain degree probable, that 
in the proper Names real reminiscences of Martyrs of 
the age of Diocletian and Licinius are preserved. Such 
names, together with those of the villages from whence 
they came, are generally not invented. In addition we 
may perhaps accept the locality of the martyrdoms and 

i-H 

the manner of it (beheading for Guria and Shmona, 

Q- 

burning for Habbib). But that is all that can pass for 

rsi 

historical. 

"The dates with which they start are very precarious : 
the consular date given in C. & 5. I, viz. Diocletiano 
VIII Maximiano VI coss., must be corrected either to 
DiocL VII Maxim. VI ~ 299 A.D., or to DiocL VIII 

1/1 

Maxim. VII = 303 A.D. ; the 14th year of Diocletian's 
reign is 297 A.D. ; if we take the mention of the 19th 
year as a correction it only brings us to 302/3 ■ 615 



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1) [So also Noldeke who says (p. 16: "In the Acts laid in Trajan's 
time we find naturally (begreiJUckeriveisE) yet grosser offences against 
history than in those laid in the time of Diocletian." Is there not here 
a slight confusion of thought? If both sets of Acts be regarded as fun- 
damentally historical, then of course begreifiichevweise is appropriate. But 
Professor Noldeke wished to demonstrate that both sets of tales are fic- 
titious. In that case I do not see why the offences against history should 
be less gross in the Dlocletianic Acts. The Acts of the Forty Martyrs 
at Sebaste belong to the time of Licinius. and their "offences against 
history" are as great as those in Sharbel (see the excellent discussion in 
F. Gorres, Unttrsuehungm iiier die Licinianischt Christenverfolgung 
(I&75), PP- *<H— «S)- F.CB.]. 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. "J 

A. Gr. ') is, for November, 303 A.D, (618 A.Gr. = 306). 
As a matter of fact, Diocletian's Edict against the 
Maniehees may be placed about 297, his order enforcing 
Sacrifice 302, the outbreak of the great Persecution 
February 303. Some of the martyrdoms mentioned in 
5. & G. § 5 did not take place till 309, e. g, that of 
Pamphilus, 

"Still less are the dates in Habbib 1 consistent. Con- 
stantino et Licinio coss. fits 312, 313/315 and 319, the 
"Licinius" of this last year being the son of Licinius 

CO 

the Emperor, who was made Consul when four years 

o 

old. The clause "i.e. the year in which he was born" 
points to 315 A.D., but the consul of 315 was Licinius 
pere. Mereover te persecution under Licinius did not 
begin before 322. . . . 

"The beginning and end of Konna's episcopate is 
unknown : from the Edessene Chronicle we learn only 
that he laid the foundations of the Church at Edessa 
in 313. 

"The synchronisms of Bishops in S. & G. 68 must 

have been taken fron\ some Chronicle ; besides, they are 

° ■& ... 

inconsistent, viz. 

Konna of Edessa alive 313. 

Hymenaeus of Jerusalem 267? — 300? 

Gaius of Rome 283 — 296. 

Theonas of Alexandria 282 ? — 301 ? 

Tyrannus of Antioch died 310.... 

"The term 'Daughters of the Covenant' (Bnatk Kyama), 



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1) [That the "Seleucid" era is described in our documents as the year 
of Alexander of Macedon proves nothing: see the end of Aphraates, 
Demons tr- xxilll F.C.B.] 



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8 INTRODUCTION. 

if really' used for Nuns, may be taken as a sign of later 
composition. Dedicated Virgins," adds v. Dobschiitz, 
"were a Christian institution, both in the East and in 
the West, from the 2 n[ i century onwards, if not from 
the days of Paul '). 

"The apparatus is in all these Martyrdoms the same: 
we have the fanatical Governor, Mysianos or Musonios 
here, Lysianos there ; the notary Avitos here, the Cap- 
tain of the Watch Theoteknos there ; also an unnamed 

00 

shorthand writer here and the inevitable executioner, 
the writer Theophilus there 2 ). 

"The tortures in detail flogging with cowhide whips 
(rxupixt); the 'Combs' ; the hanging by one hand; bending 
and straining the knee 3 ) : the red-hoi balls of lead under 
the armpits; the glowing gridiron, and other details — 

01 

all these recur in the martyrdom of Sharbel, only in a 
yet severer form 4 ). It is true that in our Acts, in con- 
trast to those of S. George and similar ones, some ap- 
pearance of possibility is maintened. The imprisonment 
in the dungeon is somewhat relaxed after the first three 
days; the original form of the Acts knows nothing of a 
three-months starvation, 

"The resultless dialogue between the Judge and the 



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3 

l) [The Syriac MS (15th cent.) adds the word for "cloistered nuns." 



but this addition was evidently absent from the text from which the 
Greek versions were made: see below, pp. 17, 22.] 

2) [Theophilos is the writer both in 5. &* G. and in H, Op the al- 
leged "fanaticism" of the Governor, see below, pp. ig — 21. F.C.B.] 

3) [On S, df" G, 35, see the Note on the passage]. 

4) [I have marked with italics the tortures which in S. &r* G, 19 are 
only thrtattntd. The "severer form" of actual infliction is peculiar to 
Sharbel. The "Combs" are mentioned several times in Eusebius 1 Martyrs 
of Palatine, there is, I fear, no doubt that they were often employed.] 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTVRDOMS. 9 

Martyrs is simply part of the 'common form' of this kind 
of Acts: that the Gods are no Gods, that the tortures 
are nothing compared with eternal torment, that the 
Emperors are only men, that one must obey God rather 
than men — in all this there is not a single original 
thought ').... 

"That the author gives his name and calls himself 
an eyewitness belongs also to the style " 

After one or two remarks on some details, Professor 
v, Dobschutz concludes (p. L) : "The date of composition 
is placed by Lipsius, with whom Noldeke agrees [Fest- 
schrift, p. 19), in the last third of the Fourth Century 
(*not earlier than about 360'). If Ephraim (d, 373) really 
knew these Acts, that is perhaps a little too late. On 
the other side, Eusebius On the Martyrs of Palestine 
(312; 2»i ed. 323 A. D.) or rather the Syriac translation 
of Eusebius, is a terminus <x quo. They can in no case 
be earlier than 340 ATX" 

That is the case for regarding the Acts of Shmona 

u 

and Guria, and of Habbib, as unhistorical. The argu- 
ments, as in all such questions, are of various weight, 
but some of them are undoubtedly formidable. It is, for 
instance, quite clear that the opening paragraphs of the 
two works cannot have been written down by a con- 
temporary as they stand, and the textual evidence does 
not suggest mere errors in transcription. Further, we 



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1) [If we had accurate Reports, would they contain "original thoughts"? 
How is it that "Theophilos" has avoided the technical phrases of post- 
Nicene theology, that have slipped into the mouth of Sharbel? See 
p. 25. F.C.B.] 



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10 INTRODUCTION. 

have to consider whether the points of resemblance 
between our Acts and the admittedly untrustworthy 
Acts of Sharbel and of Barsamya do not seriously 
damage their historical credibility. 

For the sake of clearness I will define at once the 
conclusion to which 1 venture to think the evidence 
seems to point. I accept the date 360, or thereabouts, 
for the present form of all four Acts. But I believe that 
"Theophilus" was a historical personage, and that his 
contemporary account of Shmona and Guria and of 
Habbib survives practically intact, when the extraneous 
chronological matter has been removed. 

Let us begin by reminding ourselves that Shmona, 
Guria, and Habbib are historical personages. At least, 
an overwhelming mass of evidence points in that direc- 
tion. Whether the accounts of their martyrdom which 
we possess are historical in detail is another question, 
but we have little reason for disbelieving in the Martyrs 
themselves. Their names duly appear in the famous 
Syriac Martyrology, Shmona and Guria on Nov. 15, 
and Habbib on Sep. 2, with the additional note that 
Habbib underwent martyrdom by fire. This document 
was actually penned at Edessa in 4.11 A.D., hardly a 
century after the martyrs suffered. All three martyrs 
are mentioned by S. Ephraim {i.e. before 373) as patrons 
of Edessa and as persons whose festival is kept there, 
and no others are so mentioned. They are, in fact, the 
only persons alleged to have been killed at Edessa 
during the whole "Diocletian persecution". Their names 
do not lend themselves to mythological or ritual deri- 
vations. Finally, the extant accounts of their deaths, 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. II 

though (as we have seen) they contain certain difficulties 
and discrepancies, are by comparison with many Acts 
of Martyrs neither unnatural nor incredible. 

Certain of the Acta Martyrum appear to be historical 
in the strictest sense. The oldest texts of the trial of 
S, Cyprian and of the Scillitan Martyrs, for instance, 
appear to be accurate excerpts from the official Reports, 
The same may be said of the account of the trial of 
Justin Martyr. At the other end of the scale come the 

00 

more numerous narratives, of which the Acts of SS. 

00 

Florus and Laurus may be taken as a type, where the 
historical basis appears to be nil, and the saints them- 
selves have been discovered to be nothing more than 
a Christianised form of a previously existing local cult. 
Between these extremes are many intermediate forms, 
and in the case of genuinely historical martyrs we often 
find that the piety of later narrators has so overlaid 
the bare original account that the historical figure can 
with difficulty be discerned behind it. In the case of 
the Scillitan Martyrs, for instance, the later forms have 
lost much of the freshness and simplicity of the original ] ). 

The usual procedure is to add to the glory of the 
martyrs by increasing their tortures and lengthening 
their conversations with the heathen judge. The result 
is indeed miraculous. Nothing can stop the martyr's 
talk, until it is almost a relief to hear that, as in the 
case of Habbib, the judge commands a gag to be put 
in his mouth while he is being led away to execution. 

This form of literature must have been perilously easy 
to manufacture. It is also easy to reverse the process 



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12 INTRODUCTION. 

in our modern criticism of the tales, to diminish the 
amount of torture inflicted and to cut out much of the 
talk. But this does not necessarily give us a true account 
of what happered. We have to ask whether anything 
remains, whether the narrative be historical at all, whether 
any points seem to resist analysis. 

The Acts of Habbib and of Shmona and Guria profess 
to have been drawn up by one Theophilus. He professes 
to have been an eyewitness of their deaths — not, be 

00 

it noted, of all the trials — and the account of Shmona 

CO 

and Guria he professes to have written down five days 
after the execution. It was, in fact, the steadfastness of 

r 

Shmona and Guria that determined him to be a Chris- 

Q- 

tian, though he does not claim to have declared him- 

self one until the persecution was over (§ 69). 

The main question before us is the historical existence 
■a en 

of this Theophilus and his good faith. The discrepancies 

and inconsistencies of the chronological data pointed out 

by Noldeke and v. Dobschiitz shew that we cannot 

Yi 

believe the whole narrative as it stands to have been 
written down at the time. What reasons are there for 

O ^ 

believing any part of the story? 

It is of course extremely difficult to prove that any 
narrative is historical, especially if we feel ourselves at 
liberty to credit the author with some degree of literary 
tact or historical imagination. But these gifts are not 
usually conspicuous in the writers of the Martyrdom- 
literature, and I do not see why "Theophilus" should 
be any exception. It is not merely the absence of tech- 
nical "miracle" that arrests attention in the story of the 

Edessene martyrs : besides this there is a certain natu- 
I s 

ralness and a tone of real feeling that is extremely rare 

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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 1 3 

in this class of writings. It is a feature which seems to 
me to indicate the historical genuineness of at least 
part of the account. Especially is this the case with the 
story of the actual execution of Shmona and Guria 
(SS 56 — 67), the very scene that "Theophilus" claims to 
have witnessed and that influenced him to become a 
Christian. This simple narrative is unadorned and im- 
pressive. It is in our taste, the taste that prefers above 
everything a plain report; it is not in the taste of the 
Martyrdom-literature , which cares little for historical 
accuracy or probability and is never satisfied until the 
pains of the sufferers have been increased beyond human 
endurance. What I mean can best be explained by 
comparing the scene in Shmona and Guria with that 
in Sharbel '). 

Shmona and Guria. Sharbel. 

% 55. The executioner takes [p. 59] When the executio- 

away Shmona and Guria ners arrive the people of 

with a small guard by the city are there to see 

1/1 

night, to avoid tumult- whether the odd punish- 

u 

ment is carried out and to 

o 

hear what Sharbel will 
say, 

ro 

§ 56. Place of execution spe- [p. 59] "the place where he 
cified exactly with local was to receive the punish- 
names [See Note]. ment of death". 

Shmona and Guria placed Sharbel after severer tor- 
in a cart. tures is made to "run 

quickly upon his feet 
which had been burnt". 



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1) Cureton, Ancient Syriac Documents^ 59 ff. 



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INTRODUCTION. 



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$ S7- "They were glad and [p. 6o\ Sharbel refuses to 
rejoiced that the time of drink the murderers' wine, 



their crowning had arri- 
ved". 



because (he says) "I desire 
to feel the saw with which 
ye saw me as well as the 
sword which ye pass over 
my neck". 
§§ 5^> 59- Shmona and Guria [p. 6o] Sharbel asks for time 
ask for time to pray ■ the to pray. The prayer is 



given in full (48 words 
with allusions to the Gos- 
pel History). 



executioner asks for their 

pardon and their prayers. 

They pray in silence. 
§61. Just before kneeling 

down for execution they 

utter a short exclamatory 

prayer (16 words), 
§ 60. The martyrs beg the 

executioners to bury them 

decently, as none of their 

friends are present. In § 65 [p. 60] Sharbel is elaborately 

we learn that they placed done to death with absurd 



the bodies side by side, 
but left them unburied. 
First Shmona (§§ 62, 63), 
then Guria (§ 64), kneels 
down and is beheaded 
with a single blow. 



tortures, "and when he 
was at the point to die, 
because the saw had near- 
ly reached his mouth, 
they smote him with the 
sword''. 



§ 67. Shmona's daughter [pp. 60,61] Sharbel's sister 
mentioned as among the Babai catches his blood 
first group that goes out on her skirts. The city 
to find the martyrs' bodies. sheriffs go off and tell the 

judge, who commands 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 1$ 

them to return and order 

the executioners to kill 

her. They do so with 

tortures. 

The Christians bury the [p. 61] Christian sympathi- 

bodies without molesta- sers '} steal away the 

tion. bodies of Sharbel and 

Babai secretly. 
Surely this comparison speaks for itself. But the story 
of the execution of Shmona and Guria is not only more 
probable than that of Sharbel and his sister; it is, I 
venture to say, intrinsically probable. At the time of 
the 'Diocletian' persecutions Edessa was already a pre- 
dominantly Christian city. It only produced three Mar- 
tyrs, but the popular sympathy was on their side. Indeed 
we may well imagine that the central Government would 
be far more cautious in opposing what was almost a 
national cult, than in dealing with the religion of a 
minority. It was therefore prudent to make the execu- 
tion private. The episode of the cart is told most natu- 
rally: the executioner was in a hurry to get to his 
destination, he wished to spare his prisoners, one of 
whom was aged and infirm and the other could not 
walk, so he commandeers a chance-met "Ekka", for no 
doubt the Zeuge was a country bullock-cart. The anxiety 
of Shmona and Guria for decent burial is natural, espe- 
cially in an Oriental Christian, but the puppet-martyr 
of the martyrdom-literature is for too exalted to think of 
such things. Finally, the mention of Shmona's daughter 



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1) I venture to read w^ti v^ with B. M, Add. 14645 (as in Habbib 
38) instead of w*T** v . 



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1 6 INTRODUCTION, 

at the end leads to nothing : it appears simply as a 
pathetic circumstance. The fact alleged is not improbable 
in itself, but if it were a mere invention we may re- 
member that the author had at least an even chance of 
falling into error, for he has already described Guria as 
"sanctified", i.e. as a celebate ascetic. Is it not easier to 
believe that "Theophilus" escapes all the pitfalls, be- 
cause he is really describing a scene which he had 
witnessed ? 

00 

But if important sections of the narrative of "Theo- 

00 

philus" approve themselves as contemporary and authentic, 

o 

then we are justified in regarding the whole story with 
a prejudice in its favour: it becomes reasonable to treat 
the details that are incredible or contradictory as later 
accretions or corruptions of an historical account, rather 
than as the natural features of a fictitious narrative. 

~o en 
5 ° 

The Text. — It is agreed that the, Syriac is__the_oxk — 
ginal, and that the Armenian (%) and both v. Dobschutz's 
(jreeVTexts (<8 . ® 2 ) are translations. Further we have only 
a single copy of the Syriac ; in the case of Skmona and 
Guria we have to depend on a MS. of the 15 th century. 
in the case of Habbib on one dated 936 A.D. ') But I 
am sure it would be a mistake to regard all the extra 
portions of the Syriac text as later corruption or am- 
plification. Von Dobschiitz himself admits in the Greek 
translations a tendency to curtailment (p, XIII), and most 
appropriately refers elsewhere to Abbot Butler's remark- 
able paper on apparently "conflate" readings (p.xxx, note). 



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1) It is B.M. Add, 14645, the same that contains the Acts of Thomas. 
The dating in v. DobscMti, pp. XI and I, who says "ijth or 14th cen- 
tury", rests on a. misapprehension. 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 1 7 

Especially is it hazardous, in my opinion, to reject the 
unconventional perorations at the end of the two Acta 
(S. & G\ S§ 68—70, H, S 40). 

On the other hand one or two clauses of the Syriac, 
as we have it, are no doubt interpolated. In S. & C. 
§ 1 the MS. adds r^'u.io to resole &\i», i.e. adds the 
later term for "cloistered nuns" to the ancient term for 
Christian ascetics. This is omitted in the versions and 
is no doubt a late insertion. Again, in § 32 the three 
months* imprisonment of the Martyrs in a dungeon is 

CO 

given in all our authorities: it is only in the Syriac MS. 
that the t c3ause "without eating or drinking" is added. 
This clause also is no doubt due to a later scribe rather 
than an early editor T ), I venture to think that the 
mention of the year in § 69 is an addition of the same 
kind. The very construction of the sentence shews the 
words to be an intrusion, and the parallel passage in 
Habbib § 39, which gives the month and day of the 
martyrdom, also leaves out the year % ). 

The recognition of this last interpolation is as impor- 
tant as that of the interpolation in § 32, The removal 
of the interpolated clause in § 32 takes away the only 
part of the sufferings of the saints which altogether pass 
credibility, and the removal of the date in § 69 takes 
away the one clause in Theophilus's account of the 



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1) The same may be said of the words "and his head" in § 35, as 
v. Dobschiitz points out. 

2) I give the passage in full, with the clause which I think ao inter- 
polation marked in italics" "And I have written these things on the 
20th of November, on a Sunday, five days after the crowning of these 
holy Martyrs year 618 of the Grttks^ whose very murderers were calling 
them blessed". Surely any words between "holy Martyrs" and "whose" 
must be interpolated. 



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1 8 INTRODUCTION. 

execution which could not have been written in good 
faith. With this clause away, we may ask ourselves why 
we should not regard Skmona and Guria as based upon 
a genuine account by Theophilus, in the same way that 
the Acts of the Apostles contains a genuine travel-diary? 
I believe that the parallel goes further and that Theophilus 
wrote the whole of the Syriac text, apart from a few 
corruptions such as the glosses I have just mentioned. 
The Historical Situation in the Acts. — - Professor v. 

00 

Dobschlitz in summing up against the historicity of these 
Acts lays stress on the similarity of style between them 
and the Acts of Sharbel. It seems therefore worth 

i-H 

while to draw attention to certain points in which 
Skmona & Guria and Habbib do not follow "common 
form". There is certainly very little in the story of 

01 

Sharbel or in that of Barsamya to detain the historian. 
Sharbel the chief priest of the pagans is suddenly con- 
verted by the courageous bishop Barsamya, who does 
not fail to make the appropriate reference to King 
Abgar, to Addai the apostle, and to his predecessor 
Palut. This conversion takes place in the most dramatic 
manner, but without apparent psychological reason, just 
at the time of the arrival of a command from Trajan to 
enforce the sacrifices. Sharbel, the new convert, quotes 
Scripture with the judge, who rails at him and afflicts 
him with impossibly severe tortures. The notaries write 
an account of all that has happened, and lay it up 
among the city archives 'J. 



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I) That is to say, "so that the Christians can find them in due time!" 
The real meaning is to give an explanation why this imposing event 
with all its wealth of edifying detail was unknown to genuine tradition 
and had not influenced the Christian Kalcndar. 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 19 

1 venture to claim that the picture presented in the 
Acts of Shmona and Guria and of Habbib is very dif- 
ferent. In Sharbel the central government is all-powerful : 
nothing but the miraculous power of Christ can stand 
up against it. In the Diocletian Acts, on the other hand, 
an attentive reader can see some of the difficulties of 
the Governor* By the beginning of the 4^ century A.D. 
the Christians must have been a very powerful party 
in Edessa. The converts during the past century had 
included some of the old royal family and the noble 
philosopher Bardaisan. Moreover Christianity had begun 

to spread widely in the neighbouring Empire of Persia, 

1-1 

Hardly a generation later the secular Powers had taken 
sides: the Byzantine Empire was Christian, the Sasanian 

rsi 

was anti-Christian. But at the beginning of the 4* h cen- 
tury the Christians were merely regarded as bad citizens 
of both realms, and the authorities on the spot must 
have felt the -danger of turning bad Romans into actual 
Persians 1 ). In Nicomedia Diocletian could do very much 
as he liked. In Syria also there was no alternative to 
the Roman dominion. But Edessa lay near the frontier, 
where a disaffected population might prove dangerous. 

Lactantius tells us [Inst. v. 11) that he had heard 
provincial Governors boasting that their administration 
had not been stained with Christian blood. It appears 
to me that the Governor of the Edessene district did 
his utmost to be one of these. In the Note on the Date 
of the Martyrdoms I have given in detail the reasons 



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1) 1 cannot help feeling that when Shmona and Guria announce that 
they will do the will of the King of Kings (\ 12) it must have had a 
veiy ugly sound to a Roman Governor east of the Euphrates, 



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20 INTRODUCTION. 

which seem to me quite clearly to shew that the mar- 
tyrdoms took place in 309 and 3 10. If this be so, it 
means that the Governor did not take any serious steps 
to interfere with the Christians until six years after the 
great persecution had been started in Nicomedia. 

It is possible that the mention of the year 618 of the 
Greeks (= A.D. 306/7), with which our present Syriac 
text of Shmona and Guria starts off, may be original 

after all, for it is not quite clear how long is supposed 
00 

to be occupied by the events described in §§ r — ij t 

especially § 4. The Governor has had Shmona and Guria 

arrested with other Christians. Of these others, some 

i-H 

were flogged and set at liberty, some were more seriously 
hurt before being let loose, others fined — the Syriac 
MS. here adds that "many others were killed", but the 

01 

clause has no equivalent in either Greek version or in 
the Armenian — and others the persecutors simply let 
go (§ 4). "So Guria and Shmona his companion remained 
alone in prison" (§ 5 tnit.), comforting and encouraging 
themselves by hearing of the steadfastness of the Chris- 
tian Martyrs — in other places! Surely this is a very 
unconventional picture of the times of the "Diocletian 
Persecution". Does it not shew that the Governor must 
have been doing his utmost to do nothing? 

At last Shmona and Guria are brought up for trial 
before him. In §§ 6 — 14 he tells them that they must 
obey the orders of the Government, and on their refusal 
he has them kept in custody (§ 15). Then the Governor 
is sent for to Antioch : no doubt his leniency has been 
remarked, and he comes back to Edessa with express 

3 o 

orders to proceed to extremities at once. 

O ^ 

The same general situation is depicted in the Acts 

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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 21 

of Habbib. The 'persecution' is entirely official, "When 
many were being persecuted they cried out of their 
own free will 'we are Christians' and they were not 
afraid of the persecution, because those who were per- 
secuted were more numerous than those who persecuted 
them' 1 (S i). The Governor sends to arrest FJabbib, who 
happers to be away at the time, so his mother and 
other inhabitants of his native place Tel-she ') are taken 
prisoners to Edessa. Habbib hears of this and comes to 

00 

Edessa to give himself up. The old captain of the guard 

CO 

would dissuade him and tells him not to be anxious 
about his relations, "for", he says, "no man will hurt 
them, but they will remain a few days in prison and 
the Governor will then dismiss them" (§ 9). The con- 

rsi 

versation between Habbib and Theotecna may be ima- 

aj 

ginary, but the situation depicted is wholly unlike the 
conventional picture of the faithful confessors and the 
ruthless heathen Governor, of which Sharbel and Bar- 

samya are typical examples. When finally Habbib is 

■*" ui 

brought before the Governor, the annoyance of the 
Governor with Habbib is made to start from the fact 
that he has given himself up willingly. The Governor 
would have been better pleased not to have caught 
him. It had evidently been no part of the Governor's 
plan to make Christian martyrs; he only wanted to 
"save the face" of the government. This was naturally 
misunderstood by the translators and they have left out 
§130 where it is most clearly expressed. 

The Tortures. — The evidence of Eusebius in his 
Martyrs of Palestine is enough to shew that severe 



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22 INTRODUCTION. 

tortures were really used against Christians during the 
great persecution. Those which Shmona and Guria and 
Habbib are said to have endured are similar to those 
described by Eusebius, and much milder and less fan- 
ciful than those in Sharbel and Barsamya. The really 
noteworthy feature about the tortures in Shmona and 
Guria is that the martyrs themselves feel them. Old 
Guria is stretched one day on a vertical rack (g 28) and 
afterwards confined in a dark dungeon (§ 32). He remains 
firm indeed in his confession, but physically he is a 
broken man. For this reason they give him no more 
torture (§ 35). Shmona, a younger man, is further tor- 
tured by being hung up by one leg, with the result 
that the tendons of his knee were severely damaged, 
and he cannot walk. As a rule in this class of literature, 
the most elaborate tortures seem to produce no phy- 
siological reaction whatever. 

Alleged anachronisms of Christian organisation, — I 
have already noticed the evidence which shews that the 
term dairyatha ("cloistered nuns'') does not occur in the 
genuine text of S. & G. § 1, and that the only genuine 
term there used for Christian ascetics is bnatk fyyama 
(lit. "daughters of the covenant"). I cannot regard this 
term as an anachronism. Notwithstanding all criticisms, 
I have seen nothing to change my belief that in very 
early times the Church in Mesopotamia required the 
Marcionite rule for full Church membership, and that 
the Baptized Christian was expected to give up both 
his family ties and his property '). How long this rule 
lasted is a matter of dispute: in practice, as distinct 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 2 3 

from ecclesiastical theory, I suppose it broke down soon 
after the fall of paganism and the adoption of Chris- 
tianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire. But 
I see no reason to suppose that in the 3 rd century, 
while Christianity was still more or less an illicit religion, 
persons in Mesopotamia were admitted to baptism who 
intended to live a married life. And this is the state of 
things reflected in our Acts. There is nothing to shew 
that Shmona (who had a daughter) was even baptized, 
still less that his daughter had been born after he had 
been baptized. 

In such a state of things a word is needed for those 
who are sympathisers with the Christians, though they 
are still living in the world. They are not yet properly 
"Christians", but they are not "pagans". Accordingly 
they are called pdaaaa*» KLxJiW 'nas/te c almaye, i.e. per- 
sons living in the world". The Bar fyydmd is the baptized 
Christian, the c Almaya is the Christian sympathiser, not 
yet a Catechumen. At a later period, when Bar Jfydma 
had become, with changed circumstances, narrowed down 
to denote a particular kind of monk, a similar term, 
c dlma~ndyd, is used for "layman", i.e. a baptized Christian 
not in Holy Orders. But Habbib 38 reflects an earlier 
state of things. The body of Habbib is carried by 'nasAe 
'dlmdye as well as by "brethren", and these in turn are 
distinguished from Jews and Pagans. 



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Method of Compilation. — At the end of the Syriac 
text of Habbib, after the peroration , we find added : 
"Now at the 2j" h question that the judge asked Habbib, 
he gave against him sentence of death by the burning 
of fire". This covers Habbib %% 14 — 34, and I cannot 



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24 INTRODUCTION. 

help wondering whether it was not all that Theophilus 
could get out of the official minutes of the trial, and 
that his rough notes have somehow got tacked on to 
the end of his finished composition '). 

The story of the three trials of Shmona and Guria 
reads to me more natural than that of Habbib and more 
as if it was based on definite information. No doubt it 
is not a mere transcript of shorthand notes, as the Acts 
of the Scillitan Martyrs seem to be, but I do not see 
why it should not be an expansion of such notes. I do 
not see why §§ 37—39 should not be essentially historical: 
the judge hears Shmona muttering something as he hangs 

i-H 

in torment ; he hopes it may be a promise to yield, 

6. 

and he tells the Notary to go and take his words down. 

rsi 

That Shmona said anything so elaborate as § ^y, 38 
(not that what we read is really elaborate), is impro- 
bable. But the general sense is what we might expect. 
"God of Stephen the Martyr, keep my mouth from 
begging for mercy in this agony!" — that is the gist 
of what he says. The difference between this and the 
text of §§ 37, 38, is only the difference between the 
literary taste of the fourth century and that of the 
twentieth. 

The chronology of the opening paragraphs in both 
Martyrdoms seems hopelessly faulty ; the paragraphs 
were probably drawn up in their present form half a 
century after the events, when the Acts were adapted 
for ecclesiastical use. By that time the chronology of 
the events of the great persecution had faded from 
popular memory, and Licinius was remembered as the 



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HISTORICITY OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 2$ 

adversary of Constantine and as the author of vexations 
anti-Christian regulations '). In any case, if we accept 
the story of the execution of Shmona and Guria as the 
genuine report of an eye-witness, written in good faith, 
it is the occasional and indirect chronological indications 
that we ought to start from, as they are less likely to 
be altered. 

The grain of history hidden in the chaff of Skarbel 
and Barsamya is no doubt small. It is quite conceivable 
that among other noble inhabitants of Edessa a heathen 
priest named Sharbel may have been converted about 
the middle of the 3^ century, and such a personage 
may very well have been put to death about the time 
of the Decian persecution. It is noteworthy that the 
tradition, such as it is, does not make Barsamya the 
Bishop to be a martyr. 

The date of our Acts of Skarbel appears to be earlier 
than the episcopate of Rabbula (411- — 435), for Sharbel 
quotes the apocryphal Third Epistle of Paul to the 
Corinthians 2 ), This Epistle was included in S. Ephraim's 
Commentary on the Pauline Epistles, but naturally finds 
no place in the Feshitta New Testament as revised by 
Rabbula. On the other hand Barsamya tells Sharbel 
(p. 43) that "He who put on a body is God, Son of 
God (i.e. $ss<r in hou), Son of the itkutha of His Father, 
and Son of the Kyana of Him that begat Him 3 ). This 



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1) See Gorres, Kritiscke Untersuchungrn u. d. Licinianische Christm- 
verfelgung^ passim. 

2) See ASD^ p. \1 (E. Tr., p. $6 tl ): "The scars of my body — 
that I may come to the resurrection from the dead". This is from the 
end of the Epistle. 

3) Ctfreton ASD 43. That the theological terms here used correspond 
to the Nicene phrase 6(toe6mav t$ xa,T?i is fully explained in the Ap- 



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26 INTRODUCTION. 

is distincly post-Nicene language, and in an Edessene 
document it indicates the latter half of the 4th century, 
possibly even some time in the last quarter. 

Yet there is one feature of the Acts of Sharbel which 
demands notice here, because of its marked difference 
from the Acts of the Diocletian Confessors. Not only 
is the Christianity of the Christians different in the two 
sets of documents; the Paganism of the pagans in dif- 
ferent also. Sharbel was the priest of "Bel" and "Nebo", 
and his vestments include the Diadem (rt'jew), which 
according to the Doctrine of Addai was worn by the 
heathen Abgars of Edessa and is still to be seen figured 
on their coins. But the worship in which the Diocletian 
Confessors refuse to join is the worship of "Zeus". In 
Sharbel there is no word of Zeus, in Shmona and Guria 
and in Habbib there is no word of Bel and Nebo. 
Moreover in Sharbel the populace of Edessa is repre- 
sented as half pagan, half Christian : in the Acts of the 
Diocletian Confessors the city is overwhelmingly Chris- 
tian l ), and the persecution of the Confessors is entirely 
the work of the distant and alien Graeco-Roman Em- 
peror. ''This Zeus" is the alien God, whose worship in 
every market-place was inculcated by the Fifth Edict 
of the Persecution. 

It should be noticed thar. it is not only a question 
of the names given to the Gods of heathendom. Bel 
and Nebo, so far as they do not signify the planets, 
may very likely come from the Old Testament, But 



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pendix to Bethune-Baker's Nestorius^ p. 217, to which the curious reader 
is referred. 

1) See especially Habhib | I (end). 



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HISTORICITY OK THE MARTYRDOMS. If 

when the judge says to Sharbel "Renounce not the 
Gods whom thou once confessedst", and Sharbel replies 
"Spare me again from saying that there be Gods and 
Powers and Fates and Nativities" '), are we not moving 
in the circle of ideas in which the Bardesanian Dialogue 
on Fate moves? There is nothing at all like it in the 
Diocletian Acts. 

I do not mean to try and rehabilitate on these grounds 
the historicity of the Acts of Sharbel. What I claim is 

00 

that the Acts of Sharbel and the Acts of the Diocletian 

CO 

Confessors cannot both be fictitious and also by the 

o 

same hand, It is not likely that a historical novelist 
would on the one hand so delicately distinguish succes- 
sive stages in Edessene paganism, while at the same 

o 

time he makes Sharbel in the distant past (but not 
Shmona, Guria and Habbib in the nearer past) use the 
shibboleths of Athanasian controversy. Whether the 
existing Syriac MS. of Shmona and Guria has more 
accurately preserved than the versions the terms in 
which the Martyrs speak of Christ is a difficult question, 
but in neither case are they made to use the Athanasian 
catchwords or the Trinitarian formulae. Those who main- 
tain the literary connexion between the Acts of Sharbel 

9 £ 

and the Acts of our Confessors, and yet consider these 
latter Acts fictitious, need to produce adequate expla- 
nations of all these problems. 

It seems to me probable that the Doctrine of Addai, 
the Acts of Sharbel and of Barsamya, the Acts of Guria 
and Shmona and those of Habbib, form one series 
designed to celebrate the ancient glories of the Edessene 



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2& INTRODUCTION. 

Church. The editor of the series worked over the docu- 
ments he used, but he did not invent them. What he 
may have had for the earlier periods we cannot tell. 
For the period of the Great Persecution he had the 
contemporary accounts drawn up by Theophilus, which 
he incorporated whole, merely adding chronological 
notices (mostly inaccurate) here and there. I venture to 
think we are driven to frame some such hypothesis to 
account for the touches which still make the figures of 
the Confessors of Edessa live before our eyes. 



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ON THE DATE OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 

The fact about the dates which is best attested is 
that Shmona and Guria were executed on Nov. 1 5 
and Habbib burnt on Sep. 2. This is attested by the 
ancient Synac Kalendar as well as by all authorities for 
the Acts. 

Further, the Edessene Chronicle tells us that in the 
year 312 — 3 A.D. Konna Bishop of Edessa began to 
build the' Church, which was finished by his successor. 
It is impossible not to connect this with the Edict of 
Milan tolerating Christian worship, so that any date for 
the martyrdoms later than 311 is highly improbable. 
As a matter of fact, Eusebius records martyrdoms in 
Palestine only between the years 303 and 310'). 

Now assuming the good faith of Theophilus, and also 
(for the reasons given above, p. 17, note) that the clause 

o 

"year 61B of the Greeks" in 5. & G* 69 is an interpo- 
lation, we have the further information that the fifth 
day after the execution of Shmona and Guria (Nov. 20) 
was a Sunday i ). This fact is also attested both by the 



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1) A very good discussion of the Chronology of the Martyrs of 
Palestine is given by H. J. Lawlor in Hermathena XV (190S), pp. 
177 — 201. 

2) It is perhaps not altogether fanciful to suggest that Theophilus 
may have had leisure to write on that day, not because it was a Sunday, 
but because Nov. 20 was observed as the Emperor Maxtmin's birthday. 
See Lawlor^ p. 187. 



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30 INTRODUCTION. 

Syriac and by © n in 5. & G. § 4f. In other words the 
Sunday Letter for the ^year was B, or if a Leap Year 
CB. This gives as a series of possible years A.D, 293 
298 309 315 320, The first is too early, and the last 
two too late, so we are left with 298 and 309. 

Sep, 2 is said in Habbib 39 to be a Friday in the 
Syriac, but a Saturday according to <& ] . <& 2 always 
leaves out the day of the week. According to the Syriac, 
therefore, the Sunday letter is B (or CB), according to 
©' it is A (or BA). 

If our Syriac text be accurate the possible years are 
the same as before, i.e. 29S and 309; and, as Habbib 

1-1 ■ 

suffered later, It compels us to date Shmona and Guria 

Q. 

298, Habbib 309. If (5 1 be accurate the possible years 

rsi 

are 299 304 310. On general grounds it is likely that 

the attempted enforcement of pagan sacrifice took place 

in Edessa later than in Palestine : hence we should ac- 

cept the 'Saturday' of (S 1 in Habbib 39 rather than the 

'Friday* of the Syriac, and obtain as a final result 
1/1 

Shmona and Guria executed . . . Tuesday, Nov. 15, 309 

A.D. = A.Gr. 621. 

Habbib burnt Saturday, Sep. 2, 3 10 

A.D. = A.G. 621 ] ). 

1 

rM (0 

o c - 

The above examination assumes that the definite and 
formal dates in our documents are the most liable to 
error, whether on the part of later scribes or through 
inaccuracy in the original writer. The year 310 best fits 
the general situation depicted in the peroration of Habbib 
(according to the Syriac form), where it is declared to 



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l) Or 622 if the year begin in September; see below. 



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DATE OF THE MARTVRDOMS. 3 I 

be known that Constantine has set out from the extreme 
West, but the result is still doubtful. This points to some 
time before Constantine's victory over Maxentius (312): 
it is noteworthy that no appeal is made by the Martyrs 
to any previous Edict of Toleration. 

It is possible that neither the catalogue of Bishops in 
£. & G. 68 nor the catalogue of Martyrs in $ 5 belongs 
to the original narrative of Theophilus. So far as dates 
go, the list in S 5 would support the date 309 A.D. for 
Shmona and Guria, while that in § 68 would be at least 
neutral, for though Gaius of Rome died in 296, Tyrannus 
of Antioch did not begin till 303 or later. It should 
however be pointed out that the list in § 68 is not, 
properly speaking, a list of synchronisms at all. In the 
whole of S 67 and § 68 it is not too clear what persons 
are meant by 'they', whether Shmona and Guria, or the 
Diocletian Martyrs generally, or the Christians of Edessa, 
And the last sentence in § 68 ("Now some of these 
things", &c.) implies that the Four Bishops are men- 
tioned along with Konna of Edessa not because Shmona 
and Guria suffered in their days, but because other Dio- 
cletian Martyrs suffered in their days in their dioceses. 

That Theophilus writing down a really contemporary 
account of the Martyrs could name the reigning Emperors 
incorrectly is of course impossible. Very likely he did 
not name them at all, or the judge, but spoke throughout 
of "the Emperor(s)" and "the Governor". In Habbib 39 
he may very well have written that the report had 
come to Edessa that Constantine in the far West had 
set out to fight 'with* Licinius (the present Emperor of 
the East) against the persecutors. Certainly if he did write 
in this fashion, it would easily be misunderstood by a 



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32 INTRODUCTION. 

later age, which thought of the Great Persecution as we 
do, as Diocletian's, and which came to remember Lici- 
nius chiefly as one who cashiered Christian soldiers and 
bullied Christian bishops, and also as the adversary of 
Constantine the Christian Emperor. 

In any ease the mention of Licinius here probably 
caused the wrong insertion of 'Licinius' in Habbib 3 — 5. 
The name of Maximinus does not occur anywhere in 
the transmitted Syriac text, for in Shmona and Guria 
§ 1 the name is written cdojjOo 009 , and this is also the 
name given to the Governor of Edessa {Mysianus, 
TAvvixvfe <8 a ). Possibly this name is also an insertion of 
the later editor. 

When we come to the opening paragraphs it is im- 
possible not to connect the mention of Roman Consuls 
in the Edessene document with the mention of Consuls 
at the beginning of Barsamya. The same hand no doubt 
inserted both sets. Now Barsamya is dated 5 September/ 
416 A.Gr. {= 105 A.D.), "in the consulship of Commodus 
and Cynllus". This is near enough to Commodus and 
Cerealis, the real Consuls for 106 A.D., to shew that 
the editor was using a List of Consuls, not inventing 
them out of his head '). It is a natural conjecture that 
this List itself, like the Roman Ravennate Chronicle of 
533, was provided with historical notices, e.g. to A.D. 
303 Diocletiano VII et Maximiano V is added "His 
consulib. aecclesiae demolite sunt et libri dominici com- 
busti sunt": some notice such as this may have caused 
the editor of J>. & G. to date his work by the consuls 



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1) He has further got the years of Trajan wrong; so also wUh Dio- 
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DATE OF THE MARTYRDOMS, 33 

for 304. I imagine that Theophilus merely gave a year 
A.Gr. and the Strategi of Edessa as a date. 

The dates now found in the Syriac at the beginning 
of the two Acta are A.Gr. 618 and A.Gr. 620. If we 
might assume that at this period the year began with 
Ilul =s September, instead of ending with it '), this date 
would be in each case two years too early. Is it possible 
that the current reckoning of the Seleucid Era in Edessa 
was two years different from what was afterwards rec- 
koned ? In any case, assuming that the whole narrative 
covers as short a period as possible, the date at the 
beginning of S. & G. should be the year previous to 
the actual martyrdoms. This, it may be remarked, is an 
additional reason for regarding the mention of the year 
618 in S. & G. 69 as spurious. 

The drastic treatment of the dates in the transmitted 
text of Shmona and Guria and of Habbib, here advo- 
cated, may appear somewhat arbitrary. It might seem 
a simpler solution to reject the tales altogether, as 
Noldeke and v. Dobschiitz do. I can only repeat that 
the main reason for continuing to regard the nucleus of 
the narrative of "Theophilus" as genuine history is its 
internal character. The simplicity of the tale of the 
actual executions, and the tone of personal feeling that 
pervades the perorations, are themselves facts that chal- 
lenge explanation. The perorations did not appeal to 



1) This follows from Hahbib i8b, where the r<*:v»rV of the Emperor 
is evidently Sep. I. The Syriac word used seems to be identical with 
that used by the Jews (D^TiO in i d&eda Zara I 1 for the heathen New 
Year. la the Edessene Chronicle I.XIX (death of Simeon Stylites) the 
year begins with September 5 in LXXXI (siege of Edessa) the year ends 
with September. 

5 



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34 INTRODUCTION. 

the taste of the various translators, Greek and Arme- 
nian, but they place us in a time when the memory of 
the Persecution and the terror it inspired was still fresh. 
If they be not a genuine reflexion of the writer's age 
and feelings they are artistic work of very high excel- 
lence, and artistic work of very high excellence is not 
the characteristic of the literature of Martyrdom. 



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THE PLACE OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 

The Plan of ancient Edessa generally used by modern 
writers is that to be found at the end of Wright's edi~ 
tion of Joshua Stylites. It is founded upon C. Niebuhr's 
Flan of modern Urfa (1780), supplemented and corrected 
by later scholars. A proper trigonometrical survey of 
the town and neighbourhood is much needed, though 
the preparation of it would be beset with difficulties 
both from Turkish officialdom and from the fanaticism 
of the present Moslem population. 

The main authorities for the compilation of this Note, 
besides our Martyrdoms themselves, are the Chronicle 
of "Joshua Stylites" (507 A.D,), the Edessene Chronicle 
(before 600), Rahmani's Chronicle (about 1200), and Bar 
Hebraeus (1285); the accounts of Niebuhr, Badger, and 
Sachau; and a set of photographs, some of which are 
reproduced in my book called Early Eastern Christianity, 
while that of the Church of S. Theodore (now belonging 
to the Armenians and called Der Serkis) is given here 
as a Frontispiece. 

The Chronicle of Bar Hebraeus is valuable for the 
tale of the storming of Edessa by the Atabek in 1145, 
of which it incorporates a contemporary account. The 



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1) Chronicon civile et ecclesiasticum anonymi auctoris . , . . edidit 



Ephraem Rah mam (1904), 



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$6 INTRODUCTION. 

Patriarch Rahmani's Chronicle contains a detailed list 
of the Churches and Convents in Edessa {foil, Q2— 94), 
with some welcome topographical indications : the Chro- 
nicler evidently knew Edessa well, but of course he 
writes at too late a period to be an unquestionable 
authority for the age of Diocletian and of Rabbula '). 
The Edessene Chronicle is partly dependent on Joshua 
Stylites. 

According to the unanimous testimony of all our 
sources the outline of the walls has remained unaltered 

o 

from very early times. Rahmani's Chronicler says that 
"very little" was to be seen of the actual work of 
Seleucus Nicator {/el- 48), but the ground plan tradi- 

6. 

* tionally referred to him has remained. It is probable 

rsi 

that the designer of the walls planned the main Gates 
also, but unluckily their names have varied from time 
to time. Niebuhr marks four Gates, viz. 

Haran Kapusi, on the S. side, near the SE. corner, 
Begk Kapusi, on the E. side, where the river leaves 

J: <u 

the wall, 

(_ i/i 

Gengi Kapusi, at the NE. corner, 
Samsat Kapusi, on the NW. side. 

o 9 

Sachau {Reise, p. 193) enumerates six Gates, Bab Sam- 
sat (NW.), Bab Esserai {N.j, Jeni Kapu (NE.) 2 ), Bek 
Kapusu (E.), Bab Essakib (W.) t Bab Harran (SE.). Badger 
(I 322) also mentions the Serai Gate, so that it seems 
to have been made between 1780 and 1852. It does 
not appear when the New Gate {Yeni Kapu, ^J> JJ) 
was made. 



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1) For instance on fol. 58 he assigns the diversion of the Daisan tq 
King Abgar and Addai the Apostle I 

2) See the correction at the end of Sachau's volume. 



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PLACE OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 2,7 

No modern observer speaks of any other Gate on the 
S. side than the Harran Gate, and indeed the configu- 
ration of the ground makes that the only suitable point 
for a town Gate in the S, wall. 

None of the ancient authorities call any of the Gates 
by the names of places to which they lead. RahmanTs 
Chronicler speaks of the East Gate and of the North 
Gate. Bar Hebraeus mentions the Sundial Gate (ne^ii* 
— *v« I), obviously on the S. side. The Edessene Chro- 
nicle (LXV1II) mentions the Gate of Beth Shemesh. Joshua 
Stylites mentions the "Arches" Gate (■« " V-s. -\ r£*-T&), 
the Theatre Gate and the Great Gate. Of these, the 
Arches Gate was certainly on the West, for it is called 
the West Gate in Habbib 35, and the Theatre Gate was 
opposite it , therefore on the East. It further appears 
from Joshua § 27 that the river Daisan formerly entered 
the city near the Arches Gate and left it near the 
Theatre Gate. We may therefore safely place the latter 
about half-way between the Harran Gate and the Bey's 
Gate. 

I venture further to identify the Great Gate of Joshua 
not with the Harran Gate at the SE. corner, but with 
the Bey's Gate {Beg Kapusi) on the E. side. For Joshua 
S 36 says 

This must mean: "There was a breach in the wall at 
a place south of the Great Gate" l ). Now nothing in 
Edessa is south of the Harran Gate, so that Joshua's 
Great Gate must be further to the north. It will be seen 
presently that other indications confirm this. 



1) For the idiom, see N'dUtke § 247 ^ 



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38 INTRODUCTION. 

There is every reason to suppose that Bar Hebraeus's 
Sundial Gate is the Harran Gate, and I believe also 
that this is the Gate called Gate of Beth Shemesh in 
the Edessene Chronicle (LXVlll). Is it not possible that 
a Sundial may have been called Sun House as well as 
Hours' House ? The name only occurs in this one passage. 

If we make these identifications, and only if we do 
make them, the topographical notes in Rahmani's Chro- 
nicle become comprehensible and the account of the 

00 

disposition of the Persian Army in Joshua's chapter 

CO 

about the siege of Edessa becomes clear and consistent. 
With the knowledge thus gained and confirmed we shall 
be able with some confidence to locate the places where 
Shmona and Guria and Habbib were martyred, and 

rsi 

where the Shrine stood in which their Coffin was pre- 

01 

served. 

The List in Rahmani's Chronicle names the following 
Churches in and around the city '). 

1. Church of Thomas the Apostle in the SW. corner 
of the city [= the Great Church]. 

2. Ch. of the XII Apostles in the E, quarter. [By the 
"Great Gate", says Josh. Styl. § 43]. 

3. Ch. of Sergius the Martyr by the E. Gate. [The 
Churches of S. Sergius and of S. Simeon were out- 
side the walls, Josh. § 31]. 

4. Ch. of John the Baptist in the W. quarter, with 
red marble pillars. 

5. Ch. of Stephen, in the middle of the city, which 
had been a Synagogue. [This, as all travellers agree, 



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PLACE OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 39 

corresponds to the UIu Jami, the Great Mosque 
in the centre of the town, with its ancient octa- 
gonal tower]. 

6. Ch. of Sergius in the E. quarter a little south of 
the Apostles. 

7- Two Churches of Theodore, one (a) in the Citadel 
(ndixia*), the other {&) outside, in the hill, in the 
W. quarter, on the Serug road. [N°. 7 b is doubt- 
less the building shewn in the Frontispiece, now 
called also Der Serkis and Khidr Elias]. 

S. Two Churches of the Confessors, one (a) in Ramath 
Dauke, with monastery attached, the other {&) for 
Guria, Shmona, and Habbib, by the N. Gate of 
the city. [N°. 8a is the Church mentioned by Bar 
Hebraeus, n °. 83 is our Shrine]. 
9. Ch. of Cyriacus, NE. of the Confessors. 

10. Ch. of James of the times of Julian in the village 
of JLccMVk [= tt Garamoosh" {Badger 1 325), the 
Armenian village three hours from Urfa], 

11. Churches of SS. Cosmas and Damian: {a) Cosmas 
in the S. quarter, outside in the plain ; (*) Damian 
above, at the top of the bare cliff near the city. 
The Saints themselves are buried in these Churches. 

12. In the hill many monasteries, incl. B.V.M., the 
"Orientals", and two of S. Barbara. 

13. Monastery of Kubbe, at the foot of the hill, south 
of the Ch. of Cosmas. 

14* Monastery of the Exedra, on the top of the hill, 
and others. 

15. Ch. of James r<Au&i.i in the midst of the hills, 
where there had been a great altar of the pagans 
which is standing to this day in the monastery 



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itself. [This is evidently the Der Ja c kub (Surp Hag-op), 
where Sachau found the ancient inscription of 
^*(rir«jM(rsj. K'Autai.i means "of the Mausoleums"; 
possibly James, Abbot of Naphshatha, to whom 
Jacob of Serug wrote a letter, was the actual founder 
of the Convent (see Wright CBM 5250)]. 
It will be seen from the above that the shrines of 
SS. Cosmas and Damian {nad) are outside the walls 
on the South , i.e. outside the Harran Gate. This is 
an additional reason for identifying this Gate with the 
Gate of Beth Shemesh where Bishop Nonnus built the 
Lepers' Hospital in which was the Shrine of SS. Cosmas 
and Damian. I venture to suggest that Rahmani's Shrine 
of S. Cosmas is now Job's Weil {Bir Ayyub), which ac- 
cording to Badger I 326 is a Healing Spring for skin 
diseases, and S- Damian may be "Sheikh Maksud". 

Some remains of the Church of S. Sergius appear still 
to survive in front of the Bey's Gate. "Vor Bek Kapusu", 
says Professor Sachau {Reise, p. 204), "liegt ein alter 
Kirchhof, in dessen Mauer ich antike Baureste bemerkte". 
The Church was burnt by the Persians in September, 
503 , as Joshua Stylites tells us. 

As observed above, Joshua's story of this siege of 
Edessa by the Persians serves as a kind of touchstone 
for our identifications. The Persian army under ]£awad 
invested Edessa on Wednesday, Sep. 17, A.D, 503. "His 
camp extended from the churches of S. Cosmas and S. 
Damian '), past all the gardens and the Church of S. 
Sergius and the village of Bekln, as far as the church 



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PLACE OF THE MARTYRDOMS, 4 1 

of the Confessors ; and its breadth was as far as the 
Mauvais Pas of Serrin" (§ 60) l ). An attack having failed, 
the besiegers retreat to Kubbe, i.e. the first village in 
the direction of Harran. A week later the attack is 
renewed and again fails, so the Persians retire, having 
burnt S. Sergius's Church, and also the Church of the 
Confessors (§ 62}. This, as the Edessene Chronicle (lxxxt) 
well understands, is the "Northern Basilica", outside the 
walls, not far from the N. Gate. The passage, surely, is 
now quite clear, but with Wright's identifications, made 
before Rahmani's Chronicle was discovered, it is impos- 
sible to follow the topography at all. 

We do not know whether the Church of S. Sergius 
and the Shrine of the Confessors were restored after the 
Persians burnt them. At any rate the famous Coffin 
(rdsannpali^) was safe, for "they had brought in the 
bones of all the martyrs which were around the city" 
{Josh. S 59}, to save them from injury. Indeed the other 
Shrine of the Confessors in Ramatk Daul& (Watchmen's 
Mound), with its monastery attached , seems to have 
been designed as a place of refuge for the relics and 
the monks who dwelt outside in times of peace. 

In any case, so far as our Acts of Martyrdom and 
the story of Euphemia is concerned, the Shrine of the 
Confessors evidently means the Shrine near the N. Gate. 
In only remains to locate Beth Alah &ikla itself. From 
what has been said the area of possibility has been 
greatly narrowed. The Martyrs go out alive through the 



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I) Wright's Josh. .%/., p. 51. «&l<V**i is "bud roads" lather 
than "steep descent": probably the name denoted the ford over the 
Germish Chai, 



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42 INTRODUCTION. 

W. Gate, and their bones are preserved near the N. 
Gate : Beth Alah l^i^la must be somewhere NW. of 
Edessa. 

On general grounds, as the executioners took out 
Shmona and Guria, and afterwards Habbib, by the West 
Gate, and appear to have returned the same way, we 
must look for the places of execution nearer to this 
Gate than to the Gate further north, from which their 
Shrine afterwards was approached. The very mention of 

00 

the Coffin (S. & G. 67) leaves room for the subsequent 

CO 

removal of the hallowed bones. 

o 

The data given by the Acts are 

1. Shmona and Guria were beheaded at Beth Alah 
Kikla, a rising ground N. of Edessa (rdnoitre'), but SW. 
of the spring that flows into the town (S. & G. 56). 

2. Habbib was burnt by the Cemetery of e Abshlama 
bar Abgar (H. 35). 

3. Habbib's body was carried in procession by the 
Christians to the grave of Shmona and Guria in Beth 
Alah Kikla (//. 38). 

4. The Shrine of the Confessors was near a hill 
[Euphemia 29, end), and was itself situated on rising 
ground [Euphemia 13, 33), It was therefore not just out- 

o ^ 

side the N. Gate. 

We know nothing otherwise about c Abshlama's Ceme- 
tery, but as the Testament of Ephraim (5 xi) commands 
the body of Ephraim to be buried with the poor strangers 
in common ground, and the reputed grave of S. Ephraim 
actually is at Der Serkis (i.e. the Church of S. Theodore), 
it is not unlikely that this Cemetery was in the neigh 
bourhood of Der Serkis. Further, just before, at the end 
of § x of the Testament we read 



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PLACE OF THE MARTYRDOMS. 43 

"Leave it {Ephraim's dead body), cast it on the dunghill, 
for it cannot be conscious of honour. 

Wealth is fitting for the wealthy, 
and for the poor the dunghill". 

Is not this reiterated mention of the dunghill a refe- 
rence to Beth Alah Kikla, the "Dung God's Shrine"? 

On the other hand Beth Alah Kikla is said to be N. 

o 

of Edessa, yet SW. of a certain spring which goes into 
the town. This spring is very likely the same as is 

i-i 

called Keris Suju (i.e. Canal River) in the corrigenda to 

Q- 

Sachau's volume, as it comes into Urfa from the NW. 

rsi 

The lines of the aqueducts shewn on the plan are those 
by which according to Wright the water came from 
Telzema and Maudad (Josh. Styl. % 87) : this is probably 
the aqueduct called Dschansach by Sachau's correspon- 
dent. The spring (rivaxo) mentioned in 5. & G. 56 
may be what Badger (1 328) calls Sooleiman Pyar, a 
spring where Addai is said to have baptized the first 
converts. 

With all this it must be remembered that when our 

o ^ 

documents were written the Dalsan did not go round 
Edessa as it now does, but still flowed through the 
town. Moreover, there is rising ground inside the walls 
opposite the Samosata Gate and for some distance to 
the SW, (Sachau, 192, 194), so that it is clear the ancient 
course of the river must have been south of this again, 
probably south of S. Stephen's Church. 

The general result is to locate the place of Habbib's 
martyrdom not very far from Der Serkis, where S. 



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44 INTRODUCTION. 

Ephraim's tomb is, but further to the north, i.e. on the 
extreme right hand of the Frontispiece to this book. 
The place where Shmona and Guria were executed must 
have been yet further to the north, beyond the present 
course of the Daisan and near Solomon's spring- It is 
here that we must look for remains of the Shrine built 
about A.D. 350 by Bishop Abraham, the Shrine to 
which Euphemia went up with her mother and the Goth, 
and. to which she returned in so strange and dramatic 
a fashion. 



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(TO FACE THE PLAN OF EDESSA). 

Gates of Edessa — Urfar 

1 . Bey's Gate (Bek Kapusi) = Great Gate [Josh. Styl.]. 

2. Theatre Gate [Josh. Styl.]. 

3. Harran Gate ss Sundial Gate [Bar Hebr.] ; G. of 
Beth Shemesh [Chron.]. 

4. W. Gate (Bad Essakib, Daghlar Kapu) = G. of 
the u Arches" [Josh.; Habbib]. 

5. Samosata Gate = old N. Gate. 

6. Serai Gate. 

7. New Gate (Yeni Kapu). 

The Cross close to N°. 3, marked Conf., is the New 
Church and Monastery of the Confessors, mentioned by 
Bar Hebraeus and in Rahmani's Chronicle, The large 
Bastion just south of it is probably what was called 
Ramath Daulpe (i.e. Watchmen's Height). Near the Church 

u 

of S, Theodore in the Citadel is marked the position of 
the two great Columns. S. Theodore outside the walls, 
now the Armenian Monastery of S. Sergius (Der Serkis), 
is the building shewn in the Frontispiece. The modern 
Armenian Cathedral must be very nearly on the site of 



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S. John Baptist. 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 



§ i. 



From the time that I first read the story of Euphemia 
in the Nitrian MS. I had no doubt that it was of Syriac 
origin. The Greek version had been known to me chiefly 
from a fragmentary MS. at Emmanuel College, Cam- 
bridge, but it seemed altogether inferior and secondary 
compared with the Syriac. As however Professor von 
Dobschutz, in his admirable edition of the Greek text 
of the tale, maintains that it, and not the Syriac, is the 
original, it is necessary to indicate the reasons which 
incline me to the contrary opinion, 

A tale about the local Saints of Edessa might natu- 
rally be supposed to have originated there, arid any 
other hypothesis needs either express external testimony 
or strong internal arguments. It will be convenient to 
begin by enumerating Prof. v. Dobschutz's arguments, 
to be found on p. l of his edition. 

"l. Not only is no Syriac text of Euphemia known, 
but also there is no reference to the tale in Jacob of 
Serug's Homilies or in the rest of Syriac literature**. 

The production of two Syriac MSS., one of them as 
old as the 9 th century, is not perhaps a complete answer 
to this, though it goes a considerable way. It may be 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 49 

further urged, with reference to the silence of Jacob of 
Serug and others, that the same argument might be 
used to prove that the "Hymn of the Soul" in the Acts 
of Thomas was not a Syriac original. For Jacob com- 
posed a Homily on the Palace which S. Thomas built, 
but he is silent about the great Hymn; and, on the 
other hand, the Hymn is both extant in Greek and is 
also the subject of an Encomium by Niceta of Thessa- 
lonica ! The fact is, that we do not possess an approxi- 

00 

mately complete or representative Corpus of Syriac 

CO 

Literature, in the same way that we possess it for the 
Byzantine Greek and Mediaeval Latin Literatures. What 
we have is the contents of a single monastic Library, 
supplemented by late collections from elsewhere. And 
the special interest of the story of Euphemia is its 
secular tone; it is only in some of the secondary Greek 
texts that the heroine becomes a nun. 

"2. All the Greek texts go back to a single literary 
work, which shews no trace of being a translation from 
the Syriac". 

Now that the Syriac is before us we see that the 
"translation" was so free that linguistic traces of a 
foreign style are scarcely to be looked for. The Syriac 
is as much fresher, less ecclesiastical, more like a folk- 
tale, than v. Dobschtitz's text, as that text is than those 
in the Menaea. 

"3. The quotations from the Bible are taken from the 
Septuagint". 

In the Syriac the few Biblical passages that occur 
(mostly from the Psalms) are given in according with 
the Peshitta. The translator, whether Greek or Syrian, 
simply made use of the familiar words of his own Bible. 

7 






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50 INTRODUCTION. 

"4. The mother 1 and daughter, Sophia and Euphemia, 
have Greek names". 

But these names are hardly more foreign on Meso- 
potamian ground than "Sophia" and "Euphemia" are 
in England. Euphemia was the name of a famous martyr, 
actually mentioned in the Edessene Chronicle (§ 83) '). 

*§■ The character of the Tale itself is that of the 
Greek Novel". 

Our knowledge of the range of Syriae Literature is 
less than that of Greek Literature. Yet Syriae Literature 

00 _ 

includes Romances such as the Acts of Thomas, with 

r- 

its brilliant sketches of the minor characters. The dull 

1-1 

"Romance of Julian" is a regular historical novel. But 
indeed the East has always been famous for the telling 
of Tales: the Story of Euphemia is at least as near to 

the Arabian Nights as it is to the tale of Clytemnestra 

■a en 

and Cassandra. 

It is, I venture to think, obvious that no safe con- 

elusion can be reached from these general considerations. 

The nature and provenance of the Syriae MSS are 

equally indecisive. The 9 th century Nitrian MS was 

written by one Simeon, who copied it for his own use 

(Wright, CBM 1 1 10) : the contents of the volume are 

miscellaneous, same of the stories being taken from such 

o 

well-known sources as the Historia Lausiaca, no doubt 
at second or third hand. Most of the twenty-six items 
are found elsewhere in Syriae MSS, and one of them, 
the History of Simeon of Kephar c Abdin, is certainly 
of Syriae origin a ). The Paris MS was written in the 



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1) Curiously enough, here also is a mention of a miracle wrought in 
connexion with a Coffin (ghtskmaj. 

2) See also Appendix I foe another Syriae tale from the same MS, 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH, 5 1 

13th century at Antioch, and it also is a collection of 
edifying tales. At the end of Euphemia we find a Note, 
as follows: 

"Here endeth the story of the miracle that the Holy 
Confessors performed on Euphemia who was betrothed 
to the Goth in Edessa: it was copied from an old book 
that was written in the royal city of Constantinople by 
John the Monk and Recluse". 

So far as it goes, this certainly would suggest a Greek 
origin for the tale, but the Note is not confirmed by 

o 

the Nitrian MS, written some three or four centuries 
earlier. And even if it be regarded as a serious piece 
of information, it does not legitimate the existing Greek 
text, as edited by v. Dobschiitz, against the Syriac text 

rsi 

here published ). 

Thus everything goes back to the internal evidence 
of the two texts themselves. And here I feel the verdict 
is clear and unhesitating. The Syriac text is in every 
way more original and superior to the Greek. It is 
difficult indeed to offer any formal demonstration, for 
neither text is a literal rendering of the other. But to 
give an idea of the characteristics of the two texts I 
will set down a few quite literal English translations of 
parallel passages side by side. 

1. (The actual beginning of the tale). 

- 

Syriac, Greek. 

S4= #• DobschutB) p. 150. 

In the year 707 by the In the year 707 of Alex- 



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1) The phrase "royal city" (Med math Malkutha) makes the conjecture 
possible that this part of the colophon originally belonged not to Eupkc* 
mia^ but to the Story of the Wife of Patricius and the Merchant of 
Harran (Appendix I). 



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52 



INTRODUCTION. 



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reckoning of the Greeks the 
[Huns] ') had come forth 
[into the Roman territories], 
and they captured many- 
captives and laid waste the 
country and came as far as 
Edessa. 

And Addai the Stratelates 
of those days did not give 
permission for the Foederati 
to go out against them, be- 
cause of treachery in the 
midst, and for this cause 
the armies of the Romans 
came down and lived in 
Edessa some time. 

Now a certain Goth .... 



ander King of Macedon that 
evil and destructive nation 
the Huns, having come into 
the Roman territories and 
laid waste various places 
and taken many captives, 
arrived as far as the district 
round Edessa. 



[no equivalent]. 



For this cause armed for- 
ces gathered from various 
regions occupied the city 
and lived in it a long time. 

Now a certain Goth .... 



[The point to notice is that the clause which gives 
definite local and political information is absent from 
the Greek]. 

2. {Sophia's ejaculation, when against her better jud- 
gement she consents to let the Goth marry Euphemia). 

§10= v. Dobsckutz, p. i S6 T . 

"God of the orphans and "Thou, Lord, Father of 

the widows, come to my the orphans and Judge of 
help ! My God, this business the widows, look upon what 



i) The Nitrian MS has 'Persians' on an erasure. The Huns are men- 
tioned below m § 3S, along with the Persians, as in the Greek, On the 
Syriac text of the first sentence see the Note on the passage. 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 



53 



is entrusted to thee, to 
whom alone it is revealed 1" 



is being done, and do not 
look away from my orphan 
child or helpless me ! For 
trusting in thy good Pro- 
vidence I am enduring the 
marriage of my unhappy 
daughter with an unknown 
man, who calls thee to be 
witness and surety of his 
own promites". 



[On p. Liv Prof. v. Dobschiitz says ; "Besondere Freude 
aber hat der Verfasser offenbar an der Komposition von 
Gebeten .... hier fiihrt ein griechischer Theologe die 
Feder". Now that we have the Syriac original, we can 
see exactly how much is due to the Greek theologian !] 



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3. (Sophia visits the shrine of the Confessors with 
Euphemia and the Goth before they go away to his 
home). 

§13= v. Dobschiitz t p. Ij8t 4 * 

And when they had sealed And as they were stand- 

their prayer with a tear, the ing by the reliquary of the 
mother of the girl drew near Holy ones she said to that 



and took hold of her by her 
right hand and set her upon 
the Coffin ') of the Con- 
fessors, saying to her false 



wicked man : 

"Not otherwise will I 
entrust my daughter to 
thee, except first having 



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l) The Syriac has Ghtskma^ an adaptation of yAwa-o-cxoftov (J oh. XIII 
29), as in S. &= G. 67, and also in Barhebraeus, Chr. Syr, 327 )2 . The 
Greek has A<4pvs£ and vanitr. 



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54 



INTRODUCTION. 



son-in-law: "Give me for a 
surety the hidden Power 
that dwells on these Holy- 
ones ! Both thou dost know, 
and they do, according as 
thou dost treat her!" 



touched the bier of the 
Holy ones thou acknow- 
ledge them as sureties that 
thou wilt do nothing to 
cause the girl pain, but will 
treat her will all due respect 
and harmony". 



a * 



[The Syriac uses the technical term in use at the 
Shrine; the Greek uses synonyms. For Sophia to put 
the girl on the Coffin, as in the Syriac, may have seemed 
wanting in respect ; the Greek implies a mere conven- 
tional touching. And, finally, I venture to claim (all due 
allowance being made for difference of national idiom, 
and for the execrable taste of later Greek prose gene- 
rally), that the Syriac is literature, and that the Greek 
is not. This is equally the case whether we take the 
Syriac from the Nitrian MS (here given), or from the 
slightly curtailed text of the Paris MS]. 



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4. (Euphemia, now degraded to be a slave-girl, has a 
son: the Goth's wife is jealous of her), 



§20 = 

And when the days had 
come near for the girl to 
bear, there was born to her 
a man-child, and he was like 
his father exceedingly ; and 
when the wife of the Goth 
saw the baby that he was 
like her husband she was 
struck with envy, and with 



v, Dobschutz, p. 168 fl . 

And when the days were 
accomplished the girl bove 
a man-child, in looks exact- 
ly like the Goth. And when 
the woman saw it she was 
taken with such fury as in 
every way to confirm in 
herself the opinion that she 
must anyhow kill the child. 



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AHOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 



.55 



great indignation she said 
to her husband : " Look and 
see how like he is to thee! 
Now therefore cavilling and 
lying are of no use to thee!" 
And when many times with 
indignation she had said 
this to him, hesaithto her: 
"Thou hast authority over 
her; every thing thou dost 
wish to do to her, do, for 
she is they slave". 



But to her husband she 
said: "It is vain for thee 
to contend that thou hast 
not had intercourse with 
the girl, for the child that 
has been born quite refutes 
that , he being so exceed- 
ingly like to thee". But he 
again kept asserting the 
contrary, saying this indeed 
is not true, but (it is true) 
that thou hast authority to 
use the girl as thou wilt, 
as she is thy slave and 
subject to everything that 
seems good to thee". 



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[I cannot believe that the vigour of the Syriac here 
can be due to a translator: the gruff answer of the Goth 
to his nagging spouse is ever so much more effective 
than the unnecessary lie in the Greek. And note the 
exaggeration in the first sentence : %oc.(ULHT%pit tpzp&v 
x7rx.f>aXhtiKTte$ wpoTsctxirx tat TorOu is an absurd phrase 
to use of a baby a few months old. The Syriac really 
implies no more than that the child of the Syrian girl 
had blue eyes, and perhaps a promise of light hair]. 



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5. {Sophia, to make the Goth perjure himself, pretends 
to be anxious to have news of Euphemia). 

§ 37= v. Dobschiitz, p. i88 14 . 

Sophia his mother-in-law Sophia .... 

began to ask htm, saying: asks him, saying: 



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56 INTRODUCTION. 

"What is thy tale, my son ? "How by God's help did 
And what is the tale of you bear the journey ? And 
Euphemia my daughter? how did my daughter re- 
How did the journey treat cover from the journey, she 
you? Has a son been born being with child? For I was 
to you ? Is it a boy or a in much anxiety about you, 
girl ? For I have been much lest some misfortune should 
in anxiety about you, be- meet you on the way, but 
cause of the length of the I was especially grieved 
journey". about Euphemia my daugh- 

ter, because she was with 
child". 

[On p. LIV attention is drawn by v. Dobschutz to 
Sophia's speech as a notable example of the narrator 
making his characters talk piously, I cannot believe that 
a translator would have left the piety out. The last 
sentence is much longer and perhaps more original in 
the Paris MS: "For I have been in much anxiety about 
you, on account of having let my daughter go over, 
and how you went forth hence. And for this I was 
anxious, because a long journey ye had to go, that it 
should not have happened to my daughter from the 
fatigue of the journey"]. 

These extracts are probably enough ; they could indeed 
be multiplied indefinitely, but what I have quoted gives 
the reader a fair idea of the characteristics of the two texts. 
In every way the Syriac is more natural, more secular, 
more unconventional. In a word, it is more original, and 
in what follows I shall venture to treat it as such ] ). 



cussed in the next chapter. 



1) The relative excellence of the two Syriac MSS in details is dis- 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 57 



S 2. 



What are we to make" of the tale of Euphemia? With 

what kind of commendatory letters are we to hand it 

over to the historians and to the students of Comparative 

Religion? "Good wine needs no bush", and it might be 

thought that such an excellent tale is better without 

any Introduction. There are however one or two points 

which it seems proper to bring forward here, as some 
00 

of them might easily escape notice. 

The story itself is laid in the year 396 A.D. and the 

years immediately following. But the narrator has only 

learned it from the old Verger, the Paramonarius, who 

tells it in order that it may not be unknown to sue- 

rsi 

ceeding generations. This brings us down another 30 
years at least, so that the earliest date we could pos- 
sibly assign to it is 430 A.D., with every probability 
that it is later still, We therefore see at once that it 
forms no part of the great series of which the Doctrine 
of Addai, the Acts of Sharbel and the Acts of Guria 
and Shmona and of Habbib form links. When the tale 
was first being written down, the Shrine of the Con- 
fessors built by Bishop Abraham in 350 was about a 
century old and the cult of the Saints themselves tho- 
roughly well established in Edessa. Whether we treat 
the story of Euphemia as history or myth, it can neither 
endanger the historicity of Shmona, Guria and Habbib, 
nor on the other hand legitimate the details of their 
legend, which had already received its final shape when 
the episode of the Goth is alleged to have taken place. 
It should further be noticed that the names and 
dates mentioned in the story exhibit a considerable, 

S 



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$8 ■ INTRODUCTION. 

though not quite accurate, knowledge of Edessene af- 
fairs. The invasions of the Hans really did take place 
in 395 — 6 '). Moreover the General [Stratelates] in com- 
mand at the time was really named Addai. "Joshua 
Stylites", writing at Edessa in 507, speaks of the deva- 
station then wrought, when all Syria was delivered into 
the hand of these same Huns "through the treachery 
of the Prefect Rufinus and by the supineness of Addai 

the General" 2 ). The name of Eulogius for a Bishop of 
00 

Edessa is also appropriate, though Eulogius was Bishop 

from 379 to 387, the Bishops of Edessa during the time 

of our tale being Cyrus (died 396), Silvanus (died 398), 

and Peklda. It is one of the notable peculiarities of the 

story of Euphemia that the author is better informed 

about the secular history of Edessa than about eccle- 

siastical affairs. 

I do not think we need to look for theological con- 

siderations to explain how a Goth comes to be the 

villain of an Edessene legend. Professor v. Dobschiitz 

(p. lv) suggests that Edessa was famed for its orthodoxy 

and the Goths were known to be Arians. and that this 

r-. re ' 

o ~-~~ 

is why the Goth is painted in such dark colours. But 
the Goth's orthodoxy or heterodoxy is never mentioned, 



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1) The Edessene Chronicle specifies July 395- and. within a. year 
Cyrillona tells us that a fresh incursion was threatened. 



2) rCAia.i.a.'i-sn f^&v&ocn r£Xt&OT:t K^A-LlAJ 
Qfl^VApT^pflO ,1^.1 (7 St § 9). On the treachery of Rufinus, see 
Gibbon III 224. It is convenient to go on calling the author of the 
Chronicle edited by Wright "Joshua the Stylite", though there is good 
reason for doubting that this was the name of the author. What is not 
doubted is that the author was an eyewitness of what he describes, and 
that he wrote at Edessa in 507 A.D. 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 59 

and the good people of Edessa had quite sufficient 
reasons of their own for mislikifig the Teutonic merce- 
naries of the Byzantine Emperor, Let us listen once 
more to "Joshua the Stylite": 

"Those who came to our aid", says he {§ lxxxvi), 
"plundered us almost as much as our enemies .... Be- 
cause the courts and inns of the city of Edessa were 
not sufficient for them , they lodged with the artisans 
in their shops. Before the eyes of every one they illused 
the women in the streets and houses. From old women, 
widows and poor, they took oil, wood, salt, and other 
things, for their own expenses; and they kept them 

1-1 

from their own work to wait upon them. In short, they 
harassed every one, both great and small, and there 

rsi 

was not a person left who did not suffer some harm 
from them". 

_~ CD 

And again, in April, 506, "because the city of Edessa 
was not sufficient for the Goths, they were quartered 
also in the villages, and likewise in all the convents, 
large and small, that were around the city. Not even 
those who lived in solitude were allowed to dwell in 
the quiet which they loved, because upon them too 
they were quartered in their convents. 

"Because they did not live at their own expense from 
the very first day they came, they became so gluttonous 
in their eating and drinking, that some of them who 
had regaled themselves on the tops of the houses went 
forth by night, quite stupefied with too much wine, and 
stepped out into empty space and fell headlong down, 
and so departed this life by an evil end. Others as they 
were sitting and drinking sank into slumber, and fell 
from the housetops and died on the spot. Others again 



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60 INTRODUCTION. 

suffered agonies on their beds from eating too much. 
Some poured boiling Water into the ears of those who 
waited upon them for trifling faults. Others went into a 
garden to take vegetables, and when the gardener arose 
to prevent them they slew him with an arrow, and his 
blood was not avenged. Others still, as their wickedness 
increased and there was no one to check them, since 
those on whom they were quartered behaved with great 
discretion and did every thing exactly as they wished, 
because they gave them no opportunity for doing them 
harm, were overcome by their own rage and slew one 
another. That there were among them others who lived 
decently", continues our Chronicler, addressing his patron. 
Abbot Sergius, "is not concealed from thy knowledge, 
for it is impossible that in a large army like this there 
should not be some such persons found" (§ XCVl), 

It was not the agreement of the Goths with the Here- 
siarch of Alexandria that so unfavourably impressed the 
people of Edessa, but rather their unmistakeable likeness 
to their cousin Mr Thomas Atkins, As we read the 
description in "Joshua" it needs but little effort to ima- 
gine that we are listening to the complaint of a Bengali 
Babu about some European soldiers who have got out 
of hand. The European often appears rude, ungovernable 
and intemperate to the native of Asia, and if the tale 
of Euphemia really originated in Edessa or in the neigh- 
bourhood it is not surprising that the Goth is repre- 
sented in a very unfavourable light. It is not necessary 
to assume that the story is later than 506, for the house- 
holders of Edessa may very well have had earlier ex- 
periences of Gothic soldiers billeted upon them, espe- 
dally in 396" and the following years. 



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ABOUT EUTIIEMIA AND THE GOTH. 6 1 



§ 3- 



It is fashionable now-a-days to regard large numbers 
of the Kalendar Saints as minor deities of the pagan 
world, and to treat the Legends told about them not 
as so much untrustworthy or perverted historical remi- 
niscence, but rather as pagan myth in a more or less 
Christian disguise. That this is true in certain cases is 
demonstrated practically beyond a doubt '). In such 

00 

legends it is unscientific to rationalise. But the case is 

CO 

different here : at any rate the matter is not quite 
simple. 

There are, it is true, certain features in the Story of 
Euphemia which do suggest that the Confessors stand 
in the place that Dr Rendel Harris has vindicated for 

01 

the Heavenly Twins. According to Dr Harris the Twins 
are the patrons of the bride-chamber and bestow bene- 
dictions on the newly-married 2 ), and are also the avengers 
of perjury''). This is exactly the role that the Confessors 
play in our tale. If then we knew nothing more of 
Shmona, Guria and Habbib than our tale tells us, we 

o -~ 

might be inclined to regard them as mere surrogates 
for the Great Twin Brethren. It is true that neither the 

o £ 

names nor the dates fit, but that is a trifle 1 In this 
case, however, we are dealing with Saints who are really 
historical, to whatever extent their Legend may have 
received unhistorical touches. It is therefore not neces- 
sary here to suppose that the earliest and purest texts 



l) The best instance perhaps is SS. Floras and LauiUS, with which 
Dr Rendel Harris's book on Tkt Dioscuri in the Christian Legends 
starts off. 



o £ 

2) Harris, p. 1$. 3) Harris, p. 56. 



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62 INTRODUCTION. 

of our tale will exhibit "Dioscurism" in the clearest 
form. As a matter of fact, the most "Dioscuric" trait of 
all is only found in the late and rhetorical Greek En- 
comium of Arethas, in which he makes the Confessors 
earry away Euphemia on white steeds (XsvkuT? ywv tiraxot 
ittttcht, v. Dobschuts, p. 22 r 8 ) '}. So far as the earlier 
forms are concerned this method of transit is only sug- 
gested by the lively imagination of Sophia: "Guria, 
Shmona and Habbib", she says to the Goth (§ 40 = p. 1 5o 4 ), 
"they became swift steeds for Euphemia, and delivered 
her from your hands !'* The word used {rkuba) is quite 
vague, and signifies "carriage" as well as "animal ridden" : 

1-1 

in fact , the Greek has sftwww o%y(4X {v. Dobschuts, 

6. 

192,5). This point about the steeds is a mere detail, but 

rsi 

it is worth notice as warning us that detached mytho- 
logical features in the Legend of a Saint do not always 
belong to the original form of the story. 

I should like to point out that another way of treating 
this Legend of Euphemia is open to us, a frankly 
rationalistic way. We are dealing with a story that 
seems to have originated on the spot with which it 
deals, a story which dealt not with the remote past, 
but with real places and contemporary conditions of 
life. How do such stories begin ? What is there to pre- 
vent us taking the tale of Euphemia for plain fact? 

What stands in the way, of course, is the Miracle. 
Opinions differ about the theoretical possibility of "Mi- 



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1) It has not escaped Prof. v. Dobschiitz that this may be described 
as a Dioskuren&ug. He remarks very seEsibly (p. XI-II): "Man sieht, 
viie leicht solche Motive sich einschleichen : das Thauma Iasst in der 
Tat die Art der Entriickurig gaiii unberiihrt ; hier klaffie eia'e Lucke; 
die Fbantasie war tiicht miissig, sie auszufullen !" 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH, 6$ 

racles", but I suppose no one at the present day will 
seriously accept the story of Euphemia's transit in one 
night from the land of the Goths to the Shrine of the 
Confessors as either probable or credible. Yet the story 
is in some respects so unlike the usual type of hagiolo- 
gical tale, that I find it difficult to believe that a real 
occurence does not lie at the back of it. As a matter 
of evidence we have to distinguish three witnesses. First 
comes the Narrator ; let us suppose that he really did 

00 

hear this tale from the Paramonarius. To the Narrator, 

CO 

then, we will put down the literary form, and a good 

o 

deal of the speeches, regarded as literary compositions. 
Then comes the Paramonarius, an old man, who had 
no doubt often told the tale to pious folk, and we may 
imagine it lost nothing in his hands, especially so far 
as concerned the part played by his patrons the Con- 
fessors. Then we come to the real witness, to Euphemia, 
whose tale, poor girl, we have not got, but only the 
tale which the old Paramonarius tells for her. 

There are one or two features in the talc as wc have 
it, which seem to me curious. The first is, that in all 

O *-- 

the last part Euphemia is silent. Her mother Sophia 
acts for her and speaks for her. She says not one word 
to the Goth, good or bad, and she makes no answer to 
the Stratelates, It looks to me as if she had mentally 
broken down. 

Another point in the tale that is left unexplained, 
and therefore may lead us to a clue, is the mention in 
§ 24 (=p. 141J of "the people of the city" where the Goths 
were. The Goths, after the death of Euphemia's mistress, 
the Goth's wife, drag Euphemia to the tomb and shut 
her up there. "And while they were dragging her along 



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64 INTRODUCTION. 

and beating her the people of the city saw her, and 
they were grieved for her". And then the Goths "take 
thought lest the people of the city should come and let 
her out, and accordingly roll a big stone against the 
door to keep her safe prisoner all night '). But what 
the Goths could roll by day the "people of the city" 
could roll away by night. It is evident from this passage, 
the important parts of which have no equivalent in the 
Greek, that these Goths are to be thought of as settled 
in some place within the Roman Empire, somewhere 
in Anatolia or even nearer to Edessa, where the Roman 
Law was normally administered, although in this parti- 
cular case the "judge" lives some way off. And further, 
it is evident that the native provincials had no particular 
love for the fair-haired barbarians , quartered in their 
midst in accordance with the exigences of Imperial policy. 
Is it not possible that "the people of the city" did take 
Euphemia out of the tomb by night, while the Goths 
were occupied (as usual) in drinking? 

Suppose this were the case — and it is not such a 
very improbable supposition — I imagine that the rescuers 
would find Euphemia in a state of collapse. The towns- 
folk, among whom we know that she used to go to 
market, knew that she came from Edessa. They would 
naturally want to get her out of the way as soon as 
possible, and some one who is going towards Mesopo- 
tamia takes her. She was probably quite out of her 
mind from the shock, a condition which would secure 
her respectful treatment in the Orient. Most likely she 



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ABOUT EUPHEM1A AND THE GOTH. 65 

was speechless or incoherent, and little could be got 
out of her beyond "Urhai ! Confessors of Urhai!" It is 
not necessary to suppose that she travelled with the 
same company all the way. At last Euphemia finds 
herself outside the walls of Edessa, by the knoll on 
which stands the Shrine of the Confessors. It would be 
the first considerable group of buildings that she would 
come to on her way from the West. She is quite unable 
to explain how she got there : the last that she can 

1-1 

recollect is the horrible tomb, and the rotting body of 
the Gothic woman whom she herself had killed. But she 
recognises the Confessors' Shrine and she goes inside — 

rsl 

and interrupts the service. Even as the story is told by 
the Paramonarius, whose chief concern no doubt is the 

o 

honour and glory of the Saints over whose Reliquary 

he watches, we can see that Euphemia's story was quite 

incoherent. She was so changed, that at first Sophia did 

not recognise her daughter. She had reached home in- 

deed. but she was little more than a wreck. 
ui * 

All this of course is frankly imaginative reconstruction 
of the transmitted story, based on hints which are let 
drop here and there. But it seems to me easier to be- 
lieve that something of this kind happened, than to 
suppose that the story is altogether a work of fiction 
from beginning to end, It is difficult to regard Shmona, 
Guria, and Habbib as being really Dioscuri in a Chris- 
tian dress; rather they may be regarded as having 
stepped into the place which the Dioscuri certainly 
filled in some other lands, and may once have filled in 
Edessa, as the Guardians of good faith. 

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66 INTRODUCTION. 



S 4- 



And what was their own fate ? What happened to 
the Coffin from off which the Goth received Euphemia? 
We pass down seven hundred years, to 1 144 A.D. After 
some vicissitudes Edessa is in Christian hands again, 
under Joscelin the Second, grandson of the Lord of 
Courtenay. But when on Tuesday the 28 th of November, 
1 1 44, Zengi the Atabek appeared before the walls of 

i-H 

Edessa with his Turks, Joscelin and his men-at-arms 
were far away, somewhere near Antioch, and the town 
had to defend itself as well as it could. The Turks were 
encamped "over against the Sundial Gate by the Church 
of the Confessors", that is to say they were south of the 

O 

town, near the SE, angle of the town-wall, which was 
where the Sundial Gate, now called the Harran Gate, 
was situated. Close by, inside the town, was the New 

^ ih 

Church of the Confessors, distinct from the ancient 
Shrine outside the walls on the NW. of Edessa. But 
just as in 503, the precious Relics had been brought 
inside the town during the war. For the rest we will 

.. en 

leave Bar Hebraeus to tell the story. "They pitched 
their camp over against the Gate of the Sundial, by the 
Church of the Confessors, and raised against it seven 
mangonels ') with bowmen shooting arrows like showers 
of rain. And the citizens all of them, both great and 
small, and even the monks from the Mountain, were 
standing on the wall and fighting; and all the women 



1) My readers may remember Richard of Cornwall, who "makede him 
a Castel of a milne-post" at the Battle of Lewis: the hallad suggests 
that "he weened that this wheels were mangonels" . 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 6j 

were handing out stones and water and food to the 

fighters. And when those outside mined underground 

and came up to the wall, those inside countermined 

and made a sortie, and killed those whom they found 

in the mine, and then returned and built up the wall 

where the mine was" '). This, by the way, is the siege 

of Edessa of which Gibbon says (VI 447) that the city 

was "feebly defended by a timorous and disloyal crowd 

of Orientals" ! 2 ) 
00 

The Turks continued to mine the walls, especially 

two of the towers, "and when the towers were near to 

fall, Zengi the Atabek sent to the Edessencs, and said 

'Take two men from us as hostages, and send two men 

to us that they may see how near the towers are to 

fallj and surrender the city before ye be taken prisoners 

01 

at the sword's point and perish!*" But Fapias, the cap- 
tain of the Franks in Edessa. trusted that Joscelin would 
come to relieve him in time, and so he refused to capi- 
tulate. "Then the Turks set fire to the wooden supports 
by which the towers were propped up, and they fell; 
and when the Turks began to enter by the breach, the 
citizens from within with Papias and the Bishop 3 ) stood 
in the breach and kept the Turks from entering, and 
the breach was filled with heaps of the slain both of 
besieged and besiegers. But when all the people were 
congregated at the breach, the Turks saw that the wall 
was deserted of fighting men, and they set ladders and 
got up; and when those inside saw that the Turks had 



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2} Gibbon was probably following William of Tyre XVI 4, 5, who 
regarded the people of Edessa. as 'a nation of shopkeepers'. 

3) Read rcVaa» (without *■ ) : evidently Bishop Basil is meant. 



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68 INTRODUCTION. 

got possession of the wall they lost heart and began to 
fiee to the citadel. 

"And from that moment", continues Bar-Hebraeus, 
or rather the excellent source which he is transcribing, 
"what mouth does not hesitate to tell, what finger does 
not tremble to write, about the consternation that reigned 
at 9 o'clock that Saturday morning, the 13 th January ! ') 
The Turks entered with drawn sword and it drank the 
blood of old and young, of men and women, of priests 
and deacons, of monks and anchorites , of nuns and 
virgins, of children, of bridegrooms, of brides, Alas, for 
the bitter tale ! The City of Abgar, the Friend of Christ, 
was trodden down in the dust for our sins! Oh, the 
misery of it ! Parents deserted their children and children 
their parents, the mother forgot her love for her little 
ones, and every one ran away up the hill ! 

* But the aged priests who were carrying the Coffins 
of the Confessors, when they saw the wrath, of which 
the Prophet said 'The Wrath of the Lord I will endure 
because I have sinned 1 , for that very reason did not 
flee themselves, nor did they cease from prayer until 
the sword silenced them. And afterwards they were 
found with their vestments stained with their blood. 

"Many of the mothers gathered their children as a 
hen does its brood, and waited, that either they might 
die together by the sword or might be taken to slavery 
in a body" 2 ). 

Bar-Hebraeus goes on to tell us that the gates of the 
citadel were shut against the fugitives, till at last the 



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2) Chronicle 327 . 



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ABOUT EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH. 69 

garrison recognised the face of Fapias among them. 
Meanwhile thousands had been crushed to death, or 
were slain by the Turkish arrows. At last the Atabek 
gave orders for the slaughter to cease, and then Bishop 
Basil was found as he was being dragged along naked 
and barefoot, one of a string of captives, by the Turks. 
"And when Zengi the Atabeg saw him, he was struck 
by the nobility of his face and asked who he was. And 
when he learned that it was the Metropolitan, he gave 
orders to find a dress for him and had him brought 
into his tent. And he began blaming him, because they 
had not surrendered the city and so saved the wretched 
population from slaughter. But the Bishop replied : 'It 
has pleased Divine Providence to give to thee victory 

rsi 

such as this and great and splendid renown among the 

CU 

kings, thy brothers; and to us unfortunates it has been 
■a en 

given to look our liege lord in the face, in that we were 

no traitors and did not break our oaths !' And his words 
pleased the Atabeg, and he said to him : 'The truth hast 
thou spoken, Oh Mitran! For to God and to men dear 
are they that keep their oaths, and above all those who 
persevere unto death!" 

With this tragic tale the Coffin of the Confessors dis- 
appears from history. Neither the Dioscuri of the ancient 
world nor the venerated remains of the Christian martyrs 
availed to stay the inundation of Islam. But it was a 
gallant end. The spirit of the cult to which Euphemia 
appealed survived in Bishop Basil, and the homage which 
the Atabek paid to good faith, the champions of which 
Shmona, Guria and Habbib had come to be in the eyes 
of their fellow-citizens, has proved a more enduring tri- 
bute than a costly mediaeval shrine. 



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ON THE TEXT OF THE WORKS 
HERE EDITED. 

The various narratives relating to the Confessors of 
Edessa are found together in our Greek MSS. The 
Syriac originals, on the other hand, have been trans- 
mitted separately, so that the problems which come 
before an editor are different in each case. It will be 
convenient to begin with Euphemia, as it is in every 
way the best preserved of the documents. 

EUPHEMIA. 

For the story of Euphemia we have two MSS, the 
Nitrian MS in London (L) and the MS from Antioch 
in Paris (P). 



L. — British Museum, Add. 14649, "written in a good regular hand 
of the gth century" ( Wright) by Simeon, a monk, who copied it for his 
own use. One Simeon, a priest of Tagrit (on the Tigris, S. of Mosul), 
gave it to the Nitrian Library: it does not appear whether this person 
was, or was not, identical with Simeon who wrote the book, L contains 
26 pious tales, some of which are well known and taken from Greek 
sources. Euphemia is N". 17: N°. 18 is the Story of the Merchant from 
Harran at Constantinople, printed in the Appendix to this volume : 
N°. 20 is the Story of Simeon of Kephar c Abdm, which is surely a 
Syriae original, [Wright, €BM r pp. 1108 — 11 11]. 

P. — ,Bihliotheque Nationale, Ms. Orient, 234, written at Antioch in 
the 13th century, is also a collection of pious tales, of which Euphemia 
is N°. 38. It contains several of the pieces found in L, but not in the 
same order. In the 13th century P appears to have been at Serin-Castra 
in Tur ( Abdin. [Zotenberg, Cat. des M$s. /'ends syriaque^ pp. 182 — 1 85]- 



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ON THE TEXT: — EUPHEMIA. 7 1 

Besides L and P we have the Greek edited by v. Dob- 
schiitZj in which he distinguishes two types Q> A and (5 tt , 

L and P differ considerably in minor points, just as 
© A and © R do, but their differences do not correspond 
at all to anything in the Greek l ). Indeed the Greek 
and the Syriac differ so much in character (as noticed 
in the general section about Eupkemid) that we may 
almost always accept the combinations L % against F, 
and P (5 against L, as giving the original reading. 
Similarly, it may be added, the agreement of (5* or ©" 
with the Syriac should be regarded as giving the original 
reading of the Greek translation. 

To take this latter point first, v. Dobschiitz is right 
in § 24 to read iixqv htovTccv (— © A ) and not 3/xjjj hiyovrstr 
(— <!§"), for both L and P have "like lions". Again in 

§ 24, KX.) Tifa TQ'J C<iftXT0<T SuffwS/^F apXOUfftJff SfjWff CtVXipetTlV 

rijtr xopyv {= (&*) is better than t^ tou <j-ca/&aTot? Stwal/a* 
pt,q QifiauGx v; xcpy (=■ S L1 ), because L and P have "the 
stink of that corpse grew more stifling and was killing 
her". On the other hand the Syriac MSS support w«- 
pxfiwv&jitoe for the Custodian's title against the TrpoTfAovec- 
pioT accepted by v. Dobschiitz : in general, however, it 
may be said that <S" is appreciably further away from 
the Syriac than C5 A , and the publication of the Syriac 
evidence will call for very little change in v. Dobschutz's 
Greek text. 

To decide between L and P is a more difficult matter. 
The fact that L is about 3.00 years older than P is 
perhaps balanced by the claim of P to have been copied 



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1) It should, be added that <S" iti Euphemia in bo way corresponds 
to %' 2 in Shmona and Guria. 



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72 INTRODUCTION. 

from an old book. Moreover the monk Simeon, who 
wrote L for his own use, may be supposed to have 
been 'free to make whatever alterations in this non- 
canonical ta]e that may have seemed good to him. On 
examination, we find the following features: 

r. Orthography. In matters of orthography P is sensibly 
inferior to L. Characteristic of P are forms like «^r<^, 
ndS9rei<» (poison), ,\ni , r£j»U&Or^ (for r^Usttaor^), 
M iVw*\Wt\">^- ') The extra j after the y&* sing, 
fern, perf., which is frequent in L, rarely appears, yet 
»&&r^ occurs both in L and in P (57J. We may notice 
cboOr^W* P 59 3 65 7 , ^rtf'vw P 673, ^&i_r«lj» P 6o T , 
where L has the shorter forms tnorCvi*, ^Vw . tiOA^m . 
At 5i 5 59 J2 m ^Q~^° an d ^oftiM occur in P. For the 
3rd. pi. perf. fem. we find in 6$ { ^aiu L, but c\.=n3ru 
P (a blunder); in 6$ 3 ^Aub L, but |4vi»J P; in 6y ia 
both L and P have gt a eS a 2 ). Besides these, L in 5o 14 
has ^j=a&iij . 

The rare form rf<u* ('rejoiced') occurs in L, p. 62 4 , 
where P has t %u. 

The word ^nAaoorv.* ('affidavit') is correctly written 
only in L, In P it is written ^oArdaltt.s (e.g. 70, ) 3 ). 



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1) At 62 ]8 the absolute state of rCBUaa (a captive girl) is 
in L, but ^ap^iL in P. 

2) At 70u L has »laj.i '. problaby we should read iftlSJ.i with P. 

3) ^^Ajlf^nfleui appears as a word in Payne Smith's Thesaurus, 
giving the reference "Pat.Vit. 1 ' and quoting our test. "Pat.Vit." is ex- 
plained as a MS used by Qnatremere. It is evident therefore that E. M. 
Quatremere had read the Story of Euphemia from the Paris MS half a 



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ON THE TEXT : — EUPHEMIA, 73 

In the Greek we find ^ilx<rx.a,xiix, t but what is meant is 
a ^iZxiKixKixh, i.e. a document giving information about 
a case (Labbe IV 1641 B). 

In view of emendations of dates proposed elswhere in 
this volume it is worth notice that 'seven' where it 
occurs in the narrative (58,,) is written out in full in L, 
but"* in P. 

2, Agreements of L <S against P. 

§ 26 = 6o 3 _ G Euphemia cries out in the tomb: 

"Guria and Shmona and Habbib, pillars and props 
of Edessa the Blessed". 

P omits the words in italics, but the Greek (176,) has 
2. T. kx) "A., gtuXoi Jtx) dvCpdheta t%it toXsout fiov 'ESis-jjcr. 

§3i=62 tS{) Euphemia begins her ejaculations of 
thans with : 

*All that the Lord willeth He doth in heaven and in earth". 
P omits these words, but they are in the Greek (180,). 



§ 33 = 63 G The Custodian, hearing Euphemia's ejacu- 
lations, looked at her marvelling (isna&oa s^) according 
to L, but in exasperation (iwtsnAoj na.) according to P. 
The Greek (180^) has ifavfixfyv. But for the Greek 
evidence we might have been tempted to regard the 
reading of P as original, as it is a rarer word, less ob- 
vious in the context, and yet capable of explanation, 
seeing that Euphemia was making a commotion and the 
Custodian had not yet heard her amazing story. 



§ 34 = 64 12 Euphemia tells her tale before her mother 
and those that chaneed to be present {cS noAm.rg'n ^A.r*'). 



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74 INTRODUCTION. 

P is much shorter, and the Greek quite paraphrastic, 
but the phrase %vts 7r<x.vT»<r tout KxpaTSTuxyxdraff 
%<%} tww %tyyYi$kvT®v SirxxotKFXVTxa &xvptaTX! (r84 l2 ) makes 
it clear that olajiA\x,r^.i underlies it, and that there- 
fore the longer reading of L is here original. 

§35 = 66 A The Goth comes back to Edessa, because 
of its enemies "the Persians, I mean, and the Huns, 
who had agreed to make war in this country". So L, 
but P has were sent instead of agreed. The Greek {i 86, g ) 
has GUjJLQmyatkvTcav yxp Ovvvsav tz xx\ Tlspawv, evi- 
dently supporting L. 

3. Agreements of P % against L. 

S 4 = 46 1 _4 P has "In the year 707 A.Gr. the Huns 
had come forth into the territory of the Romans, and 
they laid waste the country and captured many captives". 

L has Persians for Huns (but on an erasure), omits 
into the territory of the Romans and transposes the final 
clauses. In agreement with P the Greek (i5o ) has t& 
TTOVispbv s&voir xxi o?J8pisv, Ovvvoi (pvffAt, iTthSivrm Tttlff 
'P&{£a'ix.o7(r (/.ipstrt xx) KO&h&vtr xx) S/#$3/Ku<r rdtroutr vropQij- 
(TOcvTfa - xix) TAf/trrtjv TfjcpaXaficvTetr a'tx^xkanrlxv, 

§24= 5S ]3 "The Goths devised to deliver Euphemia 
to the judge. And because the judge was far away, 
they" took her punishment into their own hands. So L. 
In P the Goths devised to deliver her to the judge, 
and do many tortures upon her. And the judge was far 
away, &c. This is inferior as literature : if Euphemia is 
to be brought to trial, her trial ought to come first 
before the sentence. But the extra clause is represented 



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ON THE TEXT: — EUPHEMIA. 75 

in the Greek (1743a): efiovXwro toivvv tcc yyefiovt rc&uryv 

pi7fiSV0V X.T.A, 

§ 37 = 69, Several clauses that are absent from L are 
added in P at the end of Sophia's speech to the Goth, 
The Greek (iS8 10 _ 1B ) is very free, but the words h 
jrsAAfj .... virijp%ov (ppovri'Si obviously correspond to 
&i*ocn rtVii, which are in P but not in L, so that the 
Greek supports the longer text here. 

§ 39 = 6g |0 Here QXaXvyfiGbn ava7rsf/,fpa(rx f&ETa srA*/<7Tij<r 
Totpa%flv ivE(3ptpy<rxTo (i90 n ) corresponds to "cried out 
with a loud voice" (A\iii.\r<r) in L, but "was agitated 
and wailed with a loud voice (&\l*rtfe &ia«pT&ti<) in P- 

§ 44 = 73 5 The Stratelates asks the Goth how he dared 
to bridle freedom with the yoke of slavery, according to 
L. In P we find bridle freedom with the cruel yoke of 
barbarian dominion. The Greek (196J has IhsvUpxv KSptjv 
Zpyu iov&ffaf UTrofiifiXyxatr vtts $Kp0xpsv xx) Qovtxiiv Izv- 
sFir*/«v, or (as the inferior recension has it) ihsud. xdptjv 
£. SauA. (3ap0apoir hti0«h^v. Here again the Greek sup- 
ports P against L, which seems to present an inferior 
paraphrase. It is worth notice that the variations between 
L and P have nothing to do with the variations between 
(!& A and 8*. 

These examples will suffice to shew that L and P 
are independent of each other, and that the more pri- 
mitive reading is found sometimes in one, sometimes in 



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76 INTRODUCTION. 

the other. As a rule the Greek version gives little help, 
being too paraphrastic. In § I5 = 52 2 , however, <r%tfj«# 
hvhtxov points to K&o erasure's r£x.&a\ in Syriac, lit. 
"garments of slave-girldom", i.e. "the costume of a slave- 
girl". Here L has r<&cA=a-ir<.i "of widowhood", which 
is inappropriate; P has r^icnsjn^i "of slave-girls", 
which is passable, but the scribe seems to have origi- 
nally written something beginning with if^n, so that 
P's final reading is probably only a clever emendation 
of what we find in L, 

It should further be pointed out that in § 19 = 54u* 
where L says that Euphemia's mistress treated her with 
"'great hatred and great enmity", P presents us with 
a muck hatred and enmity without eneC. Opinions may 
differ as to which is better style, but I think there is 
little doubt that K'ivai .... r<4isi would be more likely 
to be turned into rtfthrAS^ .... kI^ju rcAs than vies 
versa. We must therefore allow in P for conscious sty- 
listic alterations* 

Other inferior readings of P are to be found in § 2 = 
4S a , )j S4 = 46 ; S 19 — 55 3 (P adds AAa); §24 = 
5%; § 2 7 = 6o iq 2 }; S 29 = 6i 3 ; § 31 =6i 13 (for L, see 
Judges VI 21) ; 535=65,3; § 3 6 = 66 14 — 67^ 

On the other hand, the whole address of Euphemia 
to the Confessors in § i7 = 53n-is ls more vigorous in 
the text of P, as well as shorter, than in that of L. 
Here however the Greek gives no textual help. 

The comparative merits of L and P being so difficult 
to determine, I have thought it best to print L as it 



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1) Ifuikta in later Syriac had the definite meaning of 'nave'. 

2) Here possibly the Greek may induce us to combine L and P. 



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ON THE TEXT: — EUPHEMIA. J7 

stands, only removing one or two slips of transcription, 
at the same time giving in the apparatus all the variants 
of P, so that any one may easily reconstruct an eclectic 
text as he pleases. I have not attempted to indicate 
the readings supported by the Greek, as it is in general 
so free and paraphrastic that its evidence could only 
be given by means of elaborate quotations, For conve- 
nience of reference, however, I have inserted in the 
margin the 46 chapters into which v. Dobschutz divides 
the narrative. They are not very suitable divisions for 
the Syriac text, as the Greek version makes many 
omissions in the less edifying parts of the tale, so that 
the chapters are of varying length and sometimes in- 
clude distinct incidents. 

This elaborate discussion of the Syriac text of Eup hernia 
may appear somewhat disproportionate. My special reason 
for inserting it is to suggest to the imaginations of my 
readers how very much more serious the transmitted 
variants to Skmona and Guria and to Habbib would 
have been, if we had not unfortunately been dependent 
for each of these important texts upon a single MS, 
We may roughly compare the 9^ cent. MS of Habbib 
in value to L, and the 15^ cent. MS of Skmona and 
Guria to P. It is reassuring to find, in the case of Eu- 
pkemia, that the later MS, though depraved in ortho- 
graphy and under some slight suspicion of having been 
here and there subjected to stylistic 'improvements', has 
nevertheless preserved in essentials the substance of the 
story and the general wording with which it was told 
centuries earlier '). 



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78 INTRODUCTION. 



SHMONA AND GURIA. 

For the Martyrdom of Shmona and Guria we have 
in Syriac only the 15 th century paper MS found by 
Rahmani in the Monastery of S. Mark at Jerusalem 
belonging to the Syrian Jacobites, the text of which 
was published by him in 1899'). In addition we have 
the two Greek versions published by v. Dobschiitz, and 
the Armenian version. These versions are decidedly less 
paraphrastic than the Greek version of Eupkemia, but 
they omit a good deal of the Syriac text at the end. 
The Armenian version, like the Latin version printed 
by v. Dobschiitz, pp. 200 — 209, appears to me to have 
been made from 05 ', not direct from the Syriac. If so, 
it represents a slightly earlier form of US' than the extant 
MSS of that version. 

In the chapter upon the historicity of these Martyr- 



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been used by Dr Wensinck of Utrecht for the story of Archelides 
{Legends of Eastern Saints I, by A. J. Wensinck, Leiden, 191 1). L is 
Wensinck's D and F is Wensinck's A. I am not quite sure that I 
altogether accept Dr Wensinck's estimate of the relative originality of 
the two texts for the story of Archelides, as I am inclined to put L (= D) 
higher than he does. But in any case the transmission of 'Archelides' 
and 'Euphernia' must have been quite different before the tales came to 
be included in the large collections. Moreover the story of Ardiclides, 
who came from Constantinople and afterwards lived in Egypt, has 
nothing whatever to do with Edessa, and Dr Wensinck thinks that it 
was originally written in Greek, 

l) Acta Sanctorum Ccnfessorum Guriae et Shamonae . . . . adieeta 
latina versiane primus edit iihtstrattjue Ignatius Epkraem II Rakmani 
(Rome, Loescher & Co, 1899, The Nitrian Library contained at least 
one copy of S. &> G> in B.M. Add. 14732, W. 46 (Wright CBM I I44")i 
but unfortunately this part of the volume has altogether perished. 



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ON THE TEXT: — SHMONA AND GURIA. 79 

doms and in the Note upon their date I have given 
some reasons for believing that the narrative of Theo- 
philus the eyewitness is really incorporated in these Acts, 
but that the form in which we now have them contains 
a good many statements, mainly of dates and syn- 
chronisms, which cannot have belonged to this original 
narrative. I believe that we can recognise, in a general 
way, the parts that belong to this original narrative and 

can more or less detect the parts that come from the 
00 

later redactor. But that is a very different thing from 

reconstructing the original narrative in detail. Our docu- 

ments belong to the later redaction, so that all they 

enable us directly to do is to reconstruct the earliest 

form of this later redaction. Anything beyond this, 

however probable, is of the nature of conjecture* 

For example, the list of foreign Martyrs in § 5 is 

found in A ©' as well as in J, though absent from Ct 2 . 

If we are to assume that they are absent from (■>* by 

direct transmission from the purest text, and not merely 

by arbitrary curtailment, we must regard J and % <S' as 

forming a sub-group with a common ancestor. But in 

§ 68 the list of foreign Bishops is found in J and ©*, 

though absent from 3. and (S 1 . If we are to assume that 

this list is a mere interpolation we must regard J and 

<5 2 as forming a sub-group with a common ancestor, j 

shews no signs of having been interpolated from the 

'in t! 

Versions, and so the only conclusion we can draw is 
that both lists are genuine portions of the transmitted 

O .4=! 

recension, whether or no we regard them as part of the 

work of Theophilus. 

On the other hand J, our sole Syriac witness, contains 
I s 

a number of minor interpolations and glosses, some of 

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80 INTRODUCTION. 

which seriously lower the credit of the narrative as an 
historical account. That they are merely glosses which 
have found a place in our 15th century codex through 
the misplaced piety of transcribers and are in no sense 
part of the original form of what I have called the later 
redaction, is clear from their omission by all the ver- 
sions. The clearest case perhaps is in § 4, where J tells 
us of an innumerable company of unnamed Christian 
martyrs at Edessa, concerning which .A (S 1 (5 1 are quite 
silent, although there would have been no reason for 
omission, had the clause found in J originally formed 
part of the text. It seemed to me worth while to remove 
from the text the more obvious of these glosses, which 
indeed have no claim to belong to the fourth or fifth 
century at all. 

The case is different with regard to the Peroration 
§ 69 and § 70. These sections, it is true, are absent from 
&, (3 1 and ft 2 . But they are of the nature of a Colophon, 
and so might very well be left out by translators whose 
interest in the story ended with the burial of Shmona 
and Guria. The tone of pain and alarm in § 70, shewing 
real terror at pagan persecution, is quite unlike the usual 
style of late interpolations in the Acta Martyrutn, and 
one or two phrases, such as the Sons of the Covenant 
being reduced to becoming 'watchers in the night', are 
unconventional to the verge of obscurity. 1 therefore 
retain § 69 and § 70 as part of the original form of this 
document, in fact as part of the work of Theophilus. 
But like the rest of the text of J it has suffered from 
minor interpolations. These, as the versions have failed 
us, we must detect by internal evidence alone. The im- 
portant ones are the insertion of the Year of the Greeks 



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ON THE TEXT: — SHMONA AND GURIA. 8 1 

in § 69, which can be recognised as an interpolation by 
its disturbing the run of the sentence '), and the men- 
tion of "monks" and "monasteries", which on the ana- 
logy of the interpolation of "nuns" in § 1 (J) we may 
surely omit. They were very likely inserted by the same 
hospitable scribe who in § 70 admitted Habbib into the 
text after Shmona and his companion. 

In minor matters I do not think we can mend the 
text much. J has all the poor orthography of late Syriac 
scribes. The Governor, for instance, is i^liasa^KV, not 
f^ioaa\ca as in the other texts. Similarly <x7r;<px<rt<r in 
S 52 is OQi.fiprdaaSkK', while the much earlier scribe of 
Habbib (in § 34) has ooxfiaS&n^. More important are 
questions connected with the irregular use of the Plu- 
perfect, i.e. the insertion of Kbm or ooen after a Perfect 
tense. In well preserved texts, such as the Old Syriac 
Gospels, this use of Ktoco can generally be more or less 
justified 2 ). But in several passages of Shmona and Gnria 
it appears to be simply intrusive, and very likely if we 

1/1 

possessed another MS we should find it omitted the 

u 

auxiliary. On the whole, however, J seems to be a fairly 

o 

faithful representation of its exemplar, and the marginal 

notes giving wrong readings (e.g. rtf'icvn : — = , where 

— * 
text has rdLaxa rightly) suggest that the scribe has 

recorded the readings of the exemplar where he thought 

he ought to correct it. 

a Christ our Gad". — There is one puzzling set of 
various readings connected with the Theology of our Acts 



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2) F. C. BurkiLt, Evangdion da-Mcpharrzshe II 62, 63. 



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82 INTRODUCTION. 

that is best dealt with here. The phrase ^cait^ w&MJCJW 

("the Messiah, our God") occurs in a speech of Shmona 
{§ 8) and in a speech of Guria (§ 22), according to 
the Jerusalem MS, but not according to the Armenian 
or either Greek version. Further, Guria in $ 10 speaks 
of "God the Father" according to the Syriac text, but 
the words are not in the versions. Which is here more 
original, the Syriac MS or the consensus of the trans- 
lations ? 

The question is not so easy to answer as it might 

CO 

seem. If it were merely the addition of a conventional 

O 

epithet of honour or adoration , no doubt we should 
reject it at once. But I do not think that the formula 
"Christ our God" is common in late documents, except 
in certain liturgical forms. It belongs to the language 

of worship rather than of controversy '). 

■a en 

It is clear that these phrases are all either part of 
the original writing, genuine reminiscences of the Con- 
fessors themselves, or else mere late interpolations in 
Codex J : had they been introduced by the general 
redactor they would recur in Habbib. That Jesus Christ 
is properly called "God" is, of course, assumed both in 
5. & G. and in Habbib, and indeed is definitely asserted 
in Habbib § 25, 5. & G". § 20: the question at issue is 
only one of phraseology. 

It seems to me difficult to believe that in S. & G. 
% Sb the wording of the Syriac can be the result of a 
scribe's interpolation, I quote the texts in parallel co- 
lumns : S. & G. 8b 



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Syriac 

"the One God, Lord of all, 
Who is in heaven, 
we will not call false, nor 
exchange Him for an image. 
made by men's hands. 
We do obeisance to 
God the Messiah, 
who by His grace has 
delivered us from tl is error, 
and He is our Light and 
our Physician and our Life". 



©' {v. Dobschiits, p. 10) 

"the One God, Master 

and Lord of all, 

we will not provoke, nor 

worship Him with a wooden image, 

the work of men's hands. 

For by His providence He 

delivered us from this error 

by our Lord Jesus Christ, 

His beloved Son, who is our Light 

and Redemption and Physician 

and Life for ever". 



(S 2 has (v. Dobschiitz, p. 1 1 ) 

"for Gods made with hands we will not exchange our One true God 
and His only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ, who heals us and 
delivers our souls from the error of idols". 

Surely in this passage the Syriac has the ring of ori- 
ginality. It was quite appropriate for the Martyrs to 
declare that they would worship Christ alone. But such 
a declaration might easily sound unsatisfactory, even 
heretical, to a Christian assembly: the relation of Christ 
to the Father needs to be more carefully expressed, 
and so we get the tame and colourless theology of ®' 
and 8*. 

A curious and instructive parallel to these variations 
between the Syriac and Greek texts of Skmona and 
Guria is presented by the variations between the genuine 
and interpolated texts of the Ignatian Epistles. The 
genuine Ignatius says "Our God, Jesus Christ" (Epkesians 
xvni) : this is turned by the interpolator into "The Son 
of God, begotten before the worlds and upholding all 
things by the design of the Father" '). 



1) There is a good discussion of this interpolator's point of view in 
Lightfools Ignatius^ pp, 254 — 260. 



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84 INTRODUCTION. 

The case for the genuineness of the phrase "God the 
Father" (S, & G. 10) is not so clear. In this passage 
the versions are quite literal in the immediate context, 
yet with one consent they omit the words 

I have ventured to retain all the four passages here 
discussed, while recognising that the last- mentioned one 
is of doubtful genuineness. In 5. & G. 22 it is not only 
a question of the formula " Christ our God", since ($ a 
omits many other words in the context, while ®" enlarges 
and paraphrases the whole section, though omitting the 

CO 

words here in question. In the early part of .S. & G. 8 

o 

it is possible that (as v. Dobschiitz suggests) the text 
of S a is here most original ; in that case we must regard 
the words has having been brought in from the latter 

o 

part of the chapter. 

c 
oi a) 

The bracketed Passages. — In the text of Shmorta and 
Guria as edited in this volume certain words and pas- 
sages have been enclosed in brackets. These are words 
and passages which I believe to have come not from 
Theophilus but from the redactor. The bracketing of 
these words and the rejection from the text of certain 

words found in J but absent from A CO 1 ©*, are essen- 

9 £ 

tially different processes. The latter is mere textual 

° a 

criticism, the removal of blemishes which have invaded 

OS 

the extant MS of these Acts during centuries of trans- 

'1/1 t! 

mission. The brackets in §§ 1 and 5, on the other 
hand, belong to the conjectural restoration of the work 
of Theophilus, a work not directly represented by J or 
by the versions. 

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ON THE TEXT: — HABBIB. 85 



HABBIB. 

For the Martyrdom of Habbib we have in Syriac 
only one MS, viz. that used by Cureton (N), 

N. — British Museum, Add. 14645, dated 936 A.D. This volume 
contains 41 Martyrdoms and Lives of Saints, beginning with the Acts 
of Judas Thomas. It is in fact the MS used by Wright and still remains 
the only known MS of the origins! Syriac text of the "Hymn of the 
Soul". The martyrdom of Habbib is N°. 20 {fell. 238* — 245a), following 
those of Sharbel and Barsamya (Nos. 18, 19), but there is no trace of 
Shmona arid Guria in the volume. [Wright, CBM pp. 11 1 1 — 11 16]. 

The main question concerning the text of Habbib is 
the genuineness of those sections in N which have no 
equivalent in the versions. Out of the 5 1 sections and 
subsections into which v. Dobschiitz divides the text, 
no less than 14 are omitted altogether in the Greek or 
are only represented by a few connecting words, while 
of the concluding peroration (§ 40) only the beginning 
is given '}. 

I venture to claim the whole of these sections as 

oi m 

equally genuine with the rest- The peroration at the 
1/1 

end stands or falls with the corresponding peroration 

in Shmona and Guria 69, 70. As corroborative evidence 

it should be observed that the mention of Constantine 



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in Habbib 39, omitted in the Greek, is attested by Jacob 
of Serug's Homily (Cureton ASD 95): This is unimpea- 
chable 6'h century evidence for the longer form. 

Further, the passages omitted in the Greek contain 



l) Those omitted are §§ 13a, \()a-b-e*d-e^ 24a, 36a, 3805 those only 



represented by a few words are §§ i8<j, 34, 36, 39 and 40. 



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86 INTRODUCTION. 

many details that seem genuine, either because they 
agree with the rest of the martyrdoms or because they 
are in themselves unlike the manner of late interpola- 
tions. Thus the mention of the Emperors' Festival at 
the end of § iSc must surely be genuine, for (a) the 
word for this Festival (rt\"Wr^) is unique in Syriac lite- 
rature, yet seems to be connected with a word for a 
Heathen Festival used in the Mishna '), and (£>) the day 
intended appears to have been September r, which for 

00 

certain purposes did begin the Roman year, but was 
not so used in later times at Bdcssa. In g 34 we have 
a parallel to Shniona and Guria 52: it is hardly likely 

i-H 

that a later Syriac interpolator who could write the 
flowing Syriac of Habbib's death-sentence would have 

rsi 

introduced the foreign legal terms ttujaaaar^and >ai&eiK'. 

In §§ 2, 3$ the use of r^nm for the status of a Christian 

2 en 

is in accordance with its use in the earliest Syriac lite- 
rature; Habbib the Deacon by the fact of his being in 
Orders must have been baptized , and so was a Bar 
Kyama 2 ). In § 36 we have in the Syriac, but not in 
the Greek, the words of the prayer which Habbib is 
said to have prayed at the stake. Possibly the prayer 

ID "K 

may not be genuine in the sense of a report of words 
actually attered, but in any case the language is unin- 
fluenced by Nicene watchwords. In 38 and 38^1 we have 
the account of the burying of Habbib by Jews and 
Heathen as well as by the Christians, a detail pleasing 
to us, but one I think more likely to have been omitted 
by later transcribers than inserted. Finally we have the 



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1) 'Aboda Zara I I : the word is possibly derived from Idns. 

2) The word is similarly used in S. &* G. 40. 



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ON THE TEXT: — HABBIB. 8/ 

peroration of Theophilus, which professes to be written 
while yet the issue of the war between Constantine and 
his rivals is uncertain. The persecution has stopped, but 
as yet no Edict of Toleration has been issued. There 
are certain words in this peroration which are puzzling, 
especially the apparent mention of Licinius as Constan- 
tino's opponent, but I find it difficult to believe that they 
discredit the whole section. And, as in the case of the 
peroration to Skmona and Guria, I find it especially 
difficult to believe that the note of alarm, still audible 
in the references to the terrible sea and the pitiless 
mines, comes from a writer who had only a far-off literary 
acquaintance with the Great Persecution. 

At the same time there can be no doubt that (as 
Theophilus expressly states) the writing of the Story of 
Habbib is later than the writing of that of Shmona and 
Guria. The writer is doing a thing for the second time 
and the tone is less exalted. 



Errors in ike text of N. — Codex N does not come 
before us with an entirely unknown textual character. 
It is reasonable to suppose that it will be no better and 
* no worse in Habbtb than it is in the Acts of Thomas 
or the Martyrdom of Sharbel. For a good part of the 
Acts of Thomas we now can compare it with the ancient 
palimpsest fragments at Sinai. I think the general verdict 
on B.M. Add. 14645, here called N, would be that it 
was a fairly good text, omitting little that was genuine, 
while containing a number of inferior readings and a 
few downright blunders. The character of N in Sharbel 
may be gathered from the notes to Cureton's translation 
(ASD 177 — 1 86, where it is called B). Here it presents 



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88 INTRODUCTION. 

one good reading, o»cuuaai (= Fabianus) for oooiiza of 

the older MS (p. 185), and one bad interpolation, pis. 
r^fcnlr^ a>o\ }a:v» (p. 179). where the foreign Graeco- 
Roman name "Zeus" is brought in, contrary to the point 
of view of this Martyrdom 1 ). The longer form of the 
text quoted in ASD p. 181 makes the sudden conver- 
sion of Sharbel a little less inexplicable, and that on 
p, 185 is either parallel to, or an imitation of," Habbib 
39/7 and the end of 40 '). 

In Habbib also the text of N is impossible in several 
places : instances are rCu^r^ (§ 4), r<&v»i=i (§ 8), ^'i'MrC^ 
(§ 19). Reasons for preferring in § 39 the "Saturday" of 
the Greek to rdkaoiih. (= Friday) of N have already 
been given (p, 30). In § 38 and also in the parallel pas- 
sage of Sharbel I retain rd-t-an \*». instead of reading 
risoA*. (pp. 15, 23). 

The bracketed Passages. — In the translation to Habbib 
I have inserted one or two brackets to indicate words 
and passages which can hardly have come from Theo- 
philus as they stand, The general grounds for doing so 
are the same as in the case of Shmona and Guria. 



1} See above, p, 2.6, 
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TRANSLATIONS. 



I. SHMONA AND GURIA. 
II. HABBIB. 
III. EUPHEMIA AND THE GOTH, 



13 



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I. MARTYRDOM OF SHMONA AND GURIA, 
CONFESSORS OF EDESSA. 



1 In the year 618 of the kingdom of Alexander the 
Macedonian King, [and that is the 14'H year of the reign 
of Diocletian who reigned 19 years, it being his 8 th 
Consulship and the 6*h of Mysianus], in the magistracy 
of Abba and of Abgar son of Zo c ora, in the days of 6 
Konna, Bishop of Edessa, the wicked Diocletian had 
made a persecution great and severe for all the churches 
of the Messiah that were in every region of his domi- 
nion in such wise that priests and deacons were being 
tormented with bitter burdens, and Daughters of the io 
Covenant were standing in bitter exposure, and Chris- 
tians were all in afflictions and anguish, and there was 
no peace for any one going out or coming in, from the 
rage of the oppressors who were compelling them to 

2 offer sacrifices to the Gods. For the imperial command 15 
pressed fiercely on many, and fear and trembling rested 



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on many, alarmed lest because of bodily afflictions any 



1 618 (= J)] ,A (*V (ft 1 615: for a discussion of the chronology, see 
pp, 29— 34, 

4 Mysianus (=J)] StSi 1 © 8 Maximiauus 

6 Konna] see Notes, p. 163. 

10 — n Daughters of the Covenant] J -|- and nuns: see Introd., 



pp. 17, 22, and Notes, p. 172 f. 



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SIIMONA AND GURfA. 9 1 

of them should deny faith in the Messiah. Because this 
was the endeavour of the persecutors with regard to the 
persecuted, that they should deny Jesus the Messiah 
and confess Zeus the dumb idol, and every one buying 

E and selling was to burn spices and incense before Zeus 
according to the command of the Emperor Diocletian. 

Now Guria the hallowed from Sargai-[Ketma] and 3 
Shmona his companion from Gannada were accused 
before the Judge of the country that men had heard 

to about them how they took care and pains about the 
worshippers of the Messiah and about the believers in 
the villages around them, encouraging them and saying 
to them "Beware, brethren, of your belief, and do not 
be afraid of the threats of persecutors, and do not deny 

16 the Messiah, in whose hands are your spirits, and He 
gives you power and might and heroism over the wret- 
ched persecutors, whose spirit goes forth and they return 
to their earth, and in that day all their evil thoughts 
against you perish". 

20 And as the Governor heard these things about them, 4. 
he sent and brought them before him and imprisoned 
them with many others with them. And some of them 
had been scourged and gone out from prison, and some 
of them had been combed with combs of iron and had 

4. — 5 buying and selling] This seems to refer to tbe "Fifth Edict" 
(Eus. MP IX 2; Cureton, p. 31), issued in 309 A.D. See Lawlor in 
Her ma them XV (190S), p. 199. 

7 Sargai-KetmaJ J < Ketma: see Notes, p. 164. 

II and about the believers] A £>' (CV 2 ) < 

X 4 — 15 a nd do tint , persecutors] A <5' (d» 3 ) <: this is a clear 

case of a genuine clause being preserved by J alone. €>* altogether 
paraphrases aed curtails here, as often. 

17—19 Psalm CXLV1 fCXLV) 4. 

21 before him (= A 6 ' (fV*)] J -f- and scourged them severely 



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92 TRANSLATIONS. 

departed and gone to their homes, — and those who 
were not scourged and whose bodies were not combed, 
they took their money and their property and their 
riches and released them — and others those persecutors 
had relaxed their hold of and let them go, and they 6 

5 went to their own places ; and Guria and Shmona his 
companion had remained by themselves in prison, and 
their minds and their thoughts were being strengthened 
by having heard how they had companions and fellows 
in confession and in martyrdom in other countries[, such 10 
as Epiphanius and Peter and Pamphilus with many others 

in Caesarea of Palestine, Timotheus in Gaza of Palestine, 

i-i 

Paul in Alexandria, Hesychius in N i corned ia, Peter in 

Q- 

Meletine, Hermes and his companions, Roman soldiers 

rsi 

in Nisibis on the eastern frontiers, who had been crowned IB 
through Heraclianus the Dux who was in command at 
that place] . 

6 Mysianus the Governor who was in Edessa City had 
commanded that they should bring before him Guria 
and Shmona the holy martyrs who were in prison, and 20 

7 he began to say to them thus: "Our Lords the mighty 
Emperors have commanded us that ye should sacrifice 
to the image called Zeus and cast incense on the altar 

o ^ 

placed before it, and that ye should deliver yourselves 

o 

from the Christianity in which ye stand, because ye err 25 
indeed in not confessing that there are many Gods". 
g Shmona answered and said : "As for us, we do not 

4 released them] J -j- and many others, not to be numbered or com- 
puted, after the tortures and afflictions that they endured were killed in 
the love of the Messiah and received crowns of qiartyrdom and departed 
to the Kingdom : see Introd., pp. 20, 80. 

I off. On this List of MaityrSj see Notes, p. 164. 

18 Mysianus] see Notes, pp. 165, 175. 

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SHMONA AND GURIA. 93 

err indeed, because we stand in the truth, and our be- 
lief is the Christian belief, and it is our life in the 
Messiah; and far be it from, us that we should leave 
the Messiah our God ! And to this image of wood made 
5 by carpenters and fastened with blacksmiths' nails we 
will not bring spices, and to a dumb idol we will do 
no obeisance, which is a deed of error leading to per- 
dition ; and the one God, Lord of all, who is in Heaven, 
we will not call false, nor exchange Him for an image 

00 

io made by men's hands. We do obeisance to God the Mes- 
siah, who by His grace has delivered us from this error, 
and He is our Light and our Physician and our Life", 

The Governor said: "The Emperors have commanded 9 
thus, that the Gods be honoured, and it is necessary 

rsi 

15 that the will of the Emperors be done zealously". 

Guria answered and said to him: "Thou hast heard IO 
■^ "01 

from us that we will not leave our belief, and do the 

will of sons of flesh like ourselves, but we do the will 

of our Father in heaven, God the Father, and of His 

-CD 

so beloved Son Jesus the Messiah, who said 'Every one 
that shall confess Me before men I will confess him 
before my Father in heaven, and every one that shall 
deny Me before men, I will deny him before my Father 
and before His angels' ". 

25 The Governor said: "It is not then set in your mind 11 
to do the will of the Emperors?" And.Shmona and 12 
Guria answered and say: "The will of the King of Kings 
in Heaven we will do", 

1 — 4 and our belief ..... God!] ff, 2 for our belief, the Christians' 
belief, which is our life, far be it from us to leave! (similarly ^ and (£') 
19 God the Father] ^.«5K6*<: see Introd. p. Siff. 
21 — 24 Matt X 32f. 
28 we will do] Jl€»*(B a + and the will of sin we will not do 



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94 TRANSLATIONS. 

13 The Governor says: "If in this mind, lo, ye remain, 

14 ye will die and not be left in life". Shmona answered 
and said: "Not indeed die, as thou dost suppose, but 
live indeed, according to what we believe, when we do 
the good will of our Creator". 6 

15 And when the Governor heard these things, he had 
them brought and put in prison in a Caravanserai with 
priests and deacons their companions who were there, 
soldiers guarding them, both them and all the prisoners 
that %vere there. 10 

o 

10 Now after a few days the Emperor [Diocletian] had 
sent for Mysianus the Governor of Edessa and he had 

i-H 

gone to him to the city of Antioch, and he commanded 
him how he should judge the priests and the deacons 
of the Christians who were not persuaded by him to u 
sacrifice. 

17 And when f Mysianus f came back from the Emperor 
to the city of Edessa, he had sent and brought Guria 
and Shmona from the Caravanserai in which they were 
imprisoned, with the Roman soldiers who were guarding 20 

18 them there: and when the two had entered and had 
stood before the Judge, he had begun to say to them 

l(j thus; "Our Lords the Emperors have commanded that 

o ']= 

5 our Creator] % ®* © a (with some variation) -j- but if we do the 
will of the Emperors, we shall indeed perish, as thou sayest. And if He 
kill us, there is none to make us alive; but if thou kill us according to 
to the Emperors' command, wc hope on Him that He will make us 
alive: for to Him belong both worlds and we for His Name's sake have 
given our bodies to death that in us may be fulfilled the will of our 
Saviour 

7 a Caravanserai] ©* -|- the door of which looked towards the East, 
where the business of all the city used to be transacted; see Notes, p, 165. 

r2 Mysianus] J (JHgv) has "MS. Lysianus" 

17 Mysianus] J (tx£.) Lysianus: see Notes, p. 175, on Hablrib 5. 



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SHMONA AND GURIA. 9$ 

ye should sacrifice to the images, and cast incense on 
this burnt-offering, and pour a libation of wine before 
Zeus — this one that ye see; and he that will not put 
incense and cast spices and pour a libation of wine on 
5 the burnt-offering before Zeus, on a gridiron red-hot in 
the fire I am commanded to set him and on hooks made 
red-hot in the fierceness of the flame of the fire will I 
burn him, and with the knout it is commanded me to 
scourge you until your flesh drops off before you, — 

00 

10 and indeed I will comb your sides until your lungs are 

CO 

visible, — and leaden balls I am commanded to heat and 
place under your armpits until your insides are lacerated, 
and I am commanded further to hang you by your arms 
until your shoulder blades are dislocated and with an 
IB iron fetter to shackle each of your feet, and I will hang 
you by the same foot that the fetter is fastened on. 

"a en 

Other sentences I am commanded to inflict on you, 
until the will of the Emperors, however unwillingly, 
ye do", 
20 Slimona the victorious answered and said to him: 20 
"As for us, the sentences which for a short time thou 

O -~ 

makest us suffer, and then they pass away as if they 
had not been, we are not afraid of at all ; but of Ge- 
henna that is kept for pagans and apostates we are 

as terrified and frightened. And our God, for whose Name's ■ 
sake before thee, lo, we are being tortured now, He 
will give us strength to endure them, sentences that 
are fierce for a little and afterwards cease and do not 
continue 1 until the spirit goes forth from the body they 

80 shew their strength, and afterwards are powerless and 



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96 TRANSLATIONS. 

fade. And therefore it is right for us to endure for a 
little time these threats of sentences that [thou hast] 
said, so that thereby we may be delivered from those 
who deny Him, those whose worm dieth not, and their 
fire is not quenched". 5 

21 The Governor said: "Depart from this error, as I said 
to you, because ye cannot find strength to endure the 
hard and bitter sentences that I am commanded to 
pronounce against you, until ye do the will of the 

00 

Emperors". 10 

CO 

22 Guria answered and said: K As for us, it is not in 
darkness we walk, like the worshippers of idols, because 
we are the sons of the light, and Jesus the true Light 
do we worship ; and unto the end in our belief do we 
stand, and it witnesses about us that we are true. And is 

01 

we are with Him and are the sheep of the pasture of 
that good and true Shepherd who gave Himself for us 
and delivered us from the authority of Satan, who now, 
lo, is stirring you up against us, so that he may mani- 
fest his will in the endeavour of your threats against us, 20 
as those did his will who were obedient to him of old. 

° oi 

But for us it is written that we should not be afraid of 
those that kill the body but the soul they are not able 
to kill; we are to be afraid of him that has an autho- 
rity that torments soul and body in Gehenna, even the 25 
Messiah our God, who is in authority above and below". 



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2 — 3 sentences said] J the judge that he said 

4—5 cf. Isaiah LXVI 24, Mk IX 48. 

13 — 14 and worship] ^\ ((5 1 ) ( r > s < : possibly the word "Jesus" 

is an interpolation. 

22 Cf. Matt X 28. 

24 — 26 we are ..... below] ,a<P>l <ft 2 < ; on "the Messiah our God", 
see Introd,, p. SlfF. 



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SHMONA AND GUR1A. g? 

The Governor says: "AH this patience I have had 23 
with you was not that ye should repeat your books 
before me and explain them to me, but I have had 
patience so that ye might do the will of the Emperors 
5 and escape troubles and go in peace to your homes". 

Shmona and Guria say: *We hope in our true God,24 
as thou hast said, that from this Court of Justice of 
thine we go to our true home, to where Abraham is, 
with Lazarus the poor man lying in his bosom, who is 
10 the father of our Confession ; and to our temporal habi- 
tations it is not set in our mind again to return or to 

O 

enter them^ but we go to the trysting-place of all the 
living". 

The Governor said; "I do not wish that that which 25 
la ye see should come to you at my hands ; therefore I 
have patience with you, that ye may be persuaded by 
me and do the will of the Emperors. I could, according 

"O 1/1 

to the authority that I have over you and is commanded 
me from the Emperors, have hurried on your tortures 
30 and the torments of your bodies", 

Shmona answered and said: "Once and twice thou26 
hast heard from us that our word is true, because our 

CO "K 

belief is sincere and the truth is plain; because also it 
is commanded us that our word shall be *Yea, yea' and 
2& 'Nay, nay'". 

And when the Governor saw that they were not being27 

cu -^ 

persuaded to sacrifice to the imager he had commanded 

Leontius the jailor to hang them both, Guria and 

Shmona, the holy Martyrs, by their arms above and 

SO that they should be stretched out by their feet below. 

■o (J 
cu 

8 Cf, Lk XVI 22. 24 Matt V 37. 

28 Leontius] see Notes, p. 165. 

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98 TRANSLATIONS. 

And they hanged them both according to the command 
of the judge, and they had stretched them out excee- 
dingly, and they remained hanging from the third hour 
to the ninth hour, and they were saying nothing but 
were in silence, while being dragged this way and that & 
way and scourged bitterly. 

28 And when the Governor released them he was mar- 
velling at the strength of their endurance. And he had 
commanded the jailor to ask them while yet they were 
hanging that if they would do the will of the Emperors 10 
he would take them down and release them from their 
afflictions. 

And that jailor came near to them and asked them 
and said to them in a loud voice: "Have ye been per- 

29 suaded to do the will of the Emperors?" But they, the 15 
holy Martyrs, because they were not able to speak from 
the grievousness of the afflictions and tortures they were 
having and from the dislocation of their arms and their 
shoulder-blades and from the breaking of their bones, 
were making a sign with their heads that they were 20 

30 not persuaded. And when they delayed long in their 
afflictions, until it wearied those who were standing by, 
the Governor had commanded the jailor to take them 
down from where they were hanging and to carry them 
off and to put them both in the prison which was called 25 
the Dark Hole, and to put their feet into the stocks in 
the prison until the morning. 

31 And the jailor carried them off and fettered their feet 
in the stocks and put them in the Dark Hole, and they 
stopped up the doors and windows before them that SO 
they should not see the light at all; and they were 
three days in the month of August in the summer, and 



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SHMO.NA AND GURIA. 99 

no one brought them bread and they drank no water. 
And after three days and three nights that they did3^ 
not see the light, they had opened the door of the 
Hole before them. And they were imprisoned there in 
& the prison in that Dark Holef all the month of August 
and all September and all October to the middle of 
November. And the Governor had sent and brought33 
them before him and said to them: "Wretched men, do 
the will of the Emperors and I will give you great gifts". 

10 Shmona and Guria the victorious answered and said 34 
to him: "We have said to thee that our belief and our 
word is one, and we are not changing it. And thou, 
what thou art commanded by the Emperor do quickly: 
over our bodies thou hast authority, over our spirits 

15 thou hast not authority !" 

And the Governor commanded to hang them each 35 
by one foot, with their head downwards. And they had 
put an iron fetter on the right foot of Shmona and had 
bent his kneef like a camel's, and they had inserted 

20 an iron buckle under his knee-joint above the fetter, 
and lifted and hanged Shmona by the leg on which 
was put the fetter, with his head downwards. But as 
for Guria, because they had seen that his strength was 
little and he was weak in body and useless, they did 

35 not hang him at that time. And Shmona remained 
hanging by his one leg from the second hour to the 
fifth hour. And the Roman soldiers were saying to him, 36 
those who were guarding him and standing by : "Wret- 



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19 his knee (= ^<ft' 6 2 )] J -f- and his head 

20 buckle] ] sapphire (ski): see Notes, p, 166. 



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100 TRANSLATIONS. 

ched man, how long wilt thou endure thus these grievous 
and bitter afflictions? Do the will of the Emperors, and 
they will give thee refreshment from these pains thou 
art hanging in". 

But fhef had not spared f his f own body, and he 5 
did not promise them, no, not one word by the lips, 
37 Now Shmona, while he was hanging head downwards, 
was praying and saying: "Thou art the Adorable, God, 
Father of our Lord Jesus the Messiah, without whom 
no sparrow falls into a snare; Thou art He that gavest 10 
the strength in Abraham Thy friend to endure his 
temptations, and in Joseph the victorious and so he was 
delivered from his mistress, and in Moses to endure the 

Q. 

stings of the rabid people, and in Jephthah who had 
killed his only daughter, and in David whom King Saul 15 

01 

had persecuted, and in Daniel and in the youths with 
Ananias in the midst of Babylon, and in Simon Kephas 
and in Paul the Apostle and in Stephen the Martyr 
and in all the Confessors who had given their bodies 
for killing in confession, and conquered the Enemy who 20 
was fighting with them and had gone forth in good 
gg martyrdom from this world; Thou, my Lord and my 
God, give in me strength to endure the afflictions be- 
cause of they holy Name; and Thou knowest how much 
the enemy has afflicted me in pain of this body that I 25 
may promise and give my mouth and he may cast me 
down, so that I may depart from the truth of my belief 
in Thee, and my torch be quenched that is alight with 
the oil of Thy Messiah, Jesus Thy Son adorable and 
holy". 30 

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SHMONA AND CURIA. IOI 

Now these words, that Shmona the brave and victo- 39 
rious Martyr was saying, the Notary had written them 
down at the command of the Governor, standing beside 
him while he was hanging, lest perchance from his 
5 bitter affliction he might promise to sacrifice. And when 4° 
he saw him not promising and that to turn from his 
position was not set in his mind, the Governor com- 
manded the jailor to take Shmona down from where 
he was hanging, and to carry them off and imprison 
io them in that Dark Hole where they came from. And 
the jailor had come near and taken down Shmona from 

where he was hanging, and indeed soldiers had had to 

.-1 

carry him, because he was not able to walk. And they 
had taken Guria with him, and they went and impri- 

rsi 

16 soned them in that Dark Hole according to the com- 
mand of the Governor. 

On the 15th day of November, in the night that^ 
dawns into the third day of the week, when the cock 
had crowed twice, the Governor had risen and gone 

20 down to his Court of Justice, and with him was all his 
corps of officials, and there were torches and flambeaux , 
lighted before him. 

And when he had sat down on his tribunal in the 
Basilica by the Winter Baths, at the same time he had 

25 sent eight soldiers with the jailor for Guria and Shmona; 
and he brought them both up from that Hole. And 
they were carrying Shmona, carrying him, because he 
was not able to walk on his right foot, on which that 
iron buckle had been fastened and it had sprained his 

30 knee-joint; but Guria, though he was walking on his 

3 o 

5 B 

17 in the night that dawns] see Lfc XXIII 54 and Notes, p. i6-jt. 

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102 TRANSLATIONS. 

feet, two soldiers were holding him, one on his right 
and one on his left, first on account of the afflictions 
of his imprisonment and secondly because of his age. 
And they brought them in and set them both before 
the Judge. 5 

42 And the Governor answered and said to them: "Have 
ye taken counsel to do the will of the Emperors, and 
so live and see this sun and depart and go to your 
homes, as before I said to you, and see your families 
and your relations and your property? Or is it chosen 10 

o 

by you and preferred by you to die ? Because thus have 
the Emperors commanded me : — 'He who will not do 
our will, and do obeisance to the Sun, our Lord, this 
sun he shall not see* ". 

rsi 

43 Shmona answered and said: "Thou knowest that all 15 
men are the sons of Adam and are formed from the 

_~ CD 

earth, and there is decreed for them by the Lord of 
the Sun the death of nature : how then can men be 
called Lords of the Sun, or the Sun be called Lord, 
which is a thing made like them and grows dark and 20 
fades at the end like them ? For it is the authority of 
our God that reigns over it both that it should rise 
from the East and set in the West. So long time then 
as hath been given us by our Creator and the Creator 
of this very sun we have walked in this world and have 25 
seen the light thereof; and to-day that we are doing 
the will of our God, this time as long as we have seen 
it is enough for us. For lo, even were it not so, by a 
natural death away from this life we should depart, as 
nature testifies by observation of it". 30 

44 The Governor said: "Enough of the many things ye 
have said and I have said to yon. And now in few 



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SHMONA AND GURIA. IO3 

words I say to you - — wiJl ye be persuaded to cast 
incense and pour a libation of wine on the burnt-offe- 
ring placed before this Zeus, and will ye go to your 
homes in peace ? or shall I command concerning you 
6 that ye go forth and die by the sword, as I am com- 
manded by the Emperors ?" 

Shmona answered and said to him : "If so be that45 
thou do this that thou hast said, that we go forth and 
die by the sword, and thou transfer us from this life, a 
10 blessed reward from God thou wilt receive if thou do 

CO 

this for us, as we have begged of thee from the be- 

O 

ginning". 

The Governor said to him: "This is nothing, Gaffer [46 
But do the will of the Emperors and ye shall not die 
15 miserably. For I do not wish you to die at my hands! 
And therefore I have given you all this extension and 
have heard every thing that ye have spoken before me, 
that this which, lo, ye ask from me may not be seen 
by you . 

1/1 

go Shmona answered and said to him: 'We are dying47 
for the name of Tesus our Saviour, so that we may be 

o -~ 

delivered from the second death which lasts for ever, 
and that we may become worthy of the life that reigns 
for ever and ever, in the light of the kingdom and in 

25 glory that doth not pass away". 

"For we are not better than the righteous men of 
old; not better than Simon, who was crucified head 
downwards; nor than Paul, whose head was taken off 
by the sword in Rome; nor than Stephen, whom the 

30 Jews stoned with stones; nor than James the son of 
Zebedee, whom King Agrippa kilted: nor than James 
the brother of our Lord, whom the Jews killed with a 

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104 TRANSLATIONS. 

fuller's club, nor than John the Baptist, whom divorced 
Herodias killed, nor than the rest of those many persons 
who have given their bodies to scourgings and to insult 
and to killing in confession, on account of the adorable 
and holy name of Jesus the Messiah". 5 

48 The Governor said: "Not that ye should repeat be- 
fore me the names of your fellow-believers am I silent 
and quiet, but that ye may sacrifice according to the 
command of the Emperors, and save yourselves from 
the death of the sword which, la, ye look for, from the io 
day that ye first came before me even till now", 

An Guria answered and said to him: "We are of less 
account and more miserable than all men, especially to 
be accounted to be the associates of those righteous 
men and to be compared with them. But for us there 15 
is encouragement in that which our Teacher said, 'He 
that loses his life for my sake will find it' ; and it is 
true for us, that we shall be requited for our persecu- 
tions". 

cq The Governor said : "See that I have not yet been 20 

1/1 

in a hurry to command for you death by the sword, and 
from the afflictions and tortures that it is commanded 

o 

me to pronounce upon you by the Emperors I have 
refrained until now: and now beware that I do not 
command them for you, and from your afflictions ye 25 
promise that ye will do the will of the Emperors, and 
I have no mercy further upon you, as now". 
51 Shmona and Guria answered and say to him: "If it 
had not been set in our intention and in our mind to 
endure these tortures and combings that thou torturest 30 
us with, not thus would we have been returning answer 
to thee. Because more bitter is the judgement that is 



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SHMONA AND GURIA. 105 

about to come on every one that denies God than this, 
with which, lo, thou art terrifying us now. Lo, therefore, 
we stand before thee : do whatever is commanded thee 
about as by the Emperors, as Christians, worshippers 
5 of the Messiah whose judgement there is not one of the 
Emperors will escape from". 

Then, when they had seen the Judge was persuaded 52 
to give against them the sentence of death, they rejoiced 
greatly and were glad, and both of them had given 

00 

10 glory (to God) saying: "Glory to Him who hath deemed 

00 

us worthy of this, for whose sake we have endured ac- 
cording to our strength everything that has come upon 
us, for the name of Jesus the Messiah", 

And when the Governor had seen their joy in front gg 
15 of the sword he was marvelling greatly that not even 

aj * 

with a word had they promised him anything for a 
moment, and he beat one hand on the other and was 
silent and still, thinking what he should do to them. 
And afterwards he answered and said to them: "Yejj^. 

20 know that many times I have had patience wiih you, 
that this should not be to you which now, lo, I com- 
mand concerning you, that ye go forth and die by the 
sword, even as ye have begged of me". And he had 55 
commanded the executioner to take with him ten sol- 

25 diers and go forth and take them outside of the city far 
away, because of the city-folk, that there should not 
be any grief on their account for any one in the city. 
And when the executioner had received the command^S 
of the Governor <^and)> had taken with him ten soldiers 

so and gone taking them, he went forth by night hurriedly 
by the Western Gate of the city- and lo, a cart had 
happened to be going forth and he had made them 

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1 06 TRANSLATIONS. 

both sit in the cart, before the city-folk were awake. 
And he carried them off to a hill on the north of 
Edessa, to a certain knoll called Beth Alah Kikla, which 
is to the south-west of the fountain of water that goes 
into the city. 5 

57 And when they had arrived there, he made them 
both get down from the cart that they were sitting in ; 
and they were glad and rejoicing that the moment of 
their crowning had arrived. 

58 And they both begged of that executioner that he 10 
would leave them for a moment, so that they might 

5Q both pray. And that executioner was saying to them : 
"I beg of you, pray even for me, who am sinning against 
59a you and dying before God". And they had prayed both 
of them together, but the executioner and the Roman ib 
soldiers were standing behind the holy ones, and were 
praying and begging themselves also for mercy, 

60 And when they both had prayed, they had persuaded 
those who were taking them and were saying to them : 
"Because it is night, and our brethren and our kinsfolk 20 

1/1 

are not near at this moment, do not let it be a trouble 

u 

to you to bury our bodies, even to cover our bodies 

o 

as is the custom in the world". It was a grief to them 
and they were sad that there was no one by them of 
their brothers and sons in our Lord to lay out their 25 
corpses and bury them ; and they were rejoicing much 
just as if in that very hour they were meeting the 

61 Messiah face to face. And they prayed, and said both 
of them with one voice: "Father of our Lord Jesus the 
Messiah, receive our spirits unto Thyself in peace, and 30 

3 Kikla (=^.<Si)] J Kula: see Habbib § 38 and the Note on the 
Place of the Martyrdoms, p. 4 if. 



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SHMONA AND GURIA, 107 

do Thou gather our bodies unto the day of Resurrec- 
tion and cover them!" 

And Shmona had turned and looked to the East, 62 
kneeling on his knees, and he said to that executioner: 
S "Come near and do what is commanded thee concer- 
ning me!" And he came near and smote him with one 63 
blow of the sword and did not repeat it again. 

And then Guria his companion kneeled by his side,64 
and looked to the East and stretched out his neck, and 

10 he smote him also with one blow of the sword and did 
not repeat it again. 

And the soldiers laid their bodies near one by thefig 
other, and they left them both and had gone into the city. 
And as they were coming in, large crowds met thefi6 

15 soldiers, because day had dawned and they had gone 
forth to seek where they had carried off the holy ones, 
and they were asking the soldiers "where have ye carried 
off the Confessors?" They say to them "Beth Alah 
Kikla". And much folk it was that had gone forth 1067 

20 the search for the holy martyrs. Now there was with 
that first crowd that had gone forth the daughter of 
Shmona the Confessor; and folk from all the city had 
gone forth, men and women, and they had laid out 
their bodies and had gathered the dust on which their 

25 blood was bespattered. And many of them had brought 
fine garments and many cloths and perfumes and spices 
and much balm, and as is the custom those crowds had 
gathered together the bodies of the holy ones and wrapped 
them in clean cloths and in those garments and with 

80 the balm and with the spices and with grave-bands, 

19 Kilfla] j Kula 



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I08 TRANSLATIONS. 

and they laid them in one Coffin in one grave which 
was there, saying over them psalms and anthems and 
hymns and litanies, and they were glorifying our Lord 
for the constancy and the endurance of those holy 
martyrs, in that however many afflictions and torments i 
had passed over them when persecuted, yet from the 
truth of their belief they did not depart. Because when 
they were hearing abont other martyrs who were crowned 
in various places they were calling them happy that 

00 

they had become worthy to be martyrs for the Messiah; 10 

CO 

and that what they hoped for and were thirsting for 
much was given to them through the mercy of our 
Lord, who did not withhold from them this which was 
done and enacted in the days of Konna, Bishop of Arak 
City, as is written above, and in the days of Hymenaeus, u 

68 Bishop of Jerusalem, and in the days of Gaius, Bishop 

"a en 

of Rome, and in the days of Theonas, Bishop of Alex- 
andria, and in the days of Tyrannus, Bishop of Antioch, 
with many others, not to multiply speech. Now some 
of these things were done here in the land of Mesopo- 20 
tamia, and some of them in Cilicia and in Galatia and 

r*- ro ' 

o ~~~~ 

in Syria and in Phoenicia and in Palestine and in Egypt, 
with many other lands, both in the Roman dominions 

and on all sides. 

° 1 

69 And when I beg of you, my brethren, who are af- 35 

fected by the suffering of this persecution in the pulling 
down of the churches of the Messiah and in the affiic- 

1 Coffin] the Syriac is G/ttsl'ma; see Notes, p, 160. 
8 they] i.e. the crowd of Edessene Christians. 
14 — 15 Arak City] J (ffljf.) "i.e. Urhai": see Notes> p. 169, 
15 Hymenaeus, &c] The list of Bishops is in (>Y- as well as J: sec 
Notes, p. 170, 

18 Antioch] everything after this word is found only in J. 

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SHMONA AND GURIA. IO9 

tions of the worshippers of our Lord, that ye pray for 
Theophilus who took pains and inquired and wrote a 
copy of these Memoirs, the things which with my eyes 
I saw while they were being enacted in deed on Shmona 
:> and on Guria, the holy martyrs, who renounced the 
evil inheritance of the paganism of their fathers; — and 
these same things will be a remembrance for all our 
brethren and for a good reminder of the glories that 
are coming after us. 

10 And I have written these things in the month of 
November, on the 20 th , on a Sunday, five days after 
the crowning of these holy Martyrs, whose murderers 
even were calling them happy, and in perpetrating their 
deaths were cherishing and honouring them secretly, 

15 while afraid of the imperial authority. 

But may the Messiah make salvation for His people jo 
through His great mercy and cause peace to reign in 
His holy Church, that we may no more see or hear of 
churches pulled downf, or priests killed and deacons 

20 slaughtered, f or chaste women exposed and Daughters 
of the Covenant despised, or believers persecuted and 
women carried away captive, and Sons of the Cove- 
nant made night-watchers in the lanes of the cities, or 
9 z 

spears and lances piercing the sides of holy men, or 
25 sharpened swords piercing the necks of true believers, 
or the bodies of precious men eaten by evil beasts, or 
fire naming on the bodies of men who love the Messiah, 
or saints cast into the sea to be food for fishes, or be- 
lievers with the skin of their heads flayed for not having 



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19 pulled down] J ~f- monasteries ruined or altars destroyed 

20 slaughtered] .J -J- or monks insulted: see Notes, p. 171, 



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I IO TRANSLATION. 

bowed their heads before sculptured stones, or believers 
persecuted even unto exile; but may it be accomplished 
for us in this time of persecution that "Weeping shall 
endure for the night, but joy Cometh in the morning", 
through the prayers of those victorious Martyrs and & 
true and brave Confessors Shmona and Gunaf. Mercy 
be on every one that joins in the day of their comme- 
moration, for ever and ever. Amen. 



Here endeth tlie story of Shmona and Guria, And 
the writer begs from those of a loving disposition 
a prayer for forgiveness for the faults which have 
chanced in the writing; and he that shall for- 
give shall be forgiven: yea, and amen! 



3, 4 Psalm XXX (XXIX) 6. 

6 Guria] J -f- and Habbib, and of all the Saints their friends and 
companions, the thousands, yea, myriads that were killed in their days,, 
and with the prayers of Mary and of all Saints. 



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MARTYRDOM OF HABBIB THE 
DEACON. 



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IL MARTYRDOM OF HABBIB THE DEACON. 

1 In the month of August, of the year 620 of the 
kingdom of Alexander of Macedon, [in the consulate of 
Licinius and Constantine, which is the year in which 
he was born], in the magistracy of Julius and of Barak, 5 
in the days of IJonna, Bishop of Edessa, [Licinius] ! ) 
had made a persecution against the church and all the 
people of the Christians, after that first persecution 
which the Emperor Diocletian had made. And the 
Emperor [Licinius] commanded that there should be 10 
sacrifices and libations, and that altars be repaired in 
every place, that perfumes and frankincense they should 
burn before Zeus. And when many were being perse- 

1/1 

cuted they cried out of their own free will, "We are 

u 

Christians", and they were not afraid of the persecution, 15 

o 

because those who were persecuted were more numerous 

2 than those who were persecuting. Now Habbib, who 
was of the village Tel-she 2 ), and had been made a 
deacon, was both going about to the churches in the 
villages secretly and ministering and reading the scrip- 20 
tures, and was encouraging and strengthening many by 



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31, 32. On Konna, see Notes, p. 163 f, 

2) Tel-she, m Greek ©eAffftf, means Drymount. It is mentioned in 
Wright CBM 648. 



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HABBIB. II3 

his word, and admonishing them to stand fast in the 
truth of their belief, and not to be afraid of the perse- 
cutors, and he was commanding them '). And while 
many were confirmed by his words, and received what 
6 he said affectionately, being cautioned not to renounce 
that state 2 ) in which they stood , and when the city 3 
Informers 3 ) had heard , men who had been appointed 
for this same purpose, they went in and made known 
to Ausonius 4 ), the Governor that was in the citadel of 
10 Edessa, and say to him, "Habbib, who is a deacon in 

CO 

the village Tel-she, goeth about and ministers secretly 

o 

in every place, and he withstandeth the Emperor's com- 
mand and is not afraid". And when the Governor had 4 
heard these things, he was filled with rage against Habbib ; 

O 

15 and he made a Report, and sent and made known to 

[Licinius] the Emperor all that Habbib had done, both 
■a en 

that he might learn and see what command would be 

given respecting him and those who would not sacrifice; 

for although a command had been issued that every 

20 man should sacrifice, yet it had not been ordered what 

was to be done to those who would not sacrifice; be- 

O -~ 

cause they had heard that Constantine, </who was Em- 
peror in^> Italy 5 ), in Gaul, and in Spain, was a Christian 
and did not sacrifice, And [Licinius] the Emperor gave c 
25 orders to Ausonius 3 J the Governor, that "whosoever thus 
has dared to transgress our command, our Majesty has 
commanded that he should perish by fire: and that 
others who do not comply and sacrifice, should perish 
by the sword". 



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1) SeeNotes,p. 172. 2) See Notes, p. 172. 3) See Notes, p, i73f. 

4) See Notes, p. 175. 5) See Notes, p, 176. 



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114 TRANSLATIONS. 

Q Now when this command had come to the citadel of 
Edessa, Habbib, the same on whose account the Report 
had been made, was gone over to the country of the 
Zeugmatites, in order that he might minister there also 
secretly. And when the Governor had sent and inquired £ 
for him in his village, and in all the country round, and 
he could not be found, he had commanded that all 
his family should be arrested, and the inhabitants of 
his village, and they had arrested them and put them 

00 

into irons, his mother and the rest of his family, and 10 

00 

also some of the people of his village ; and they brought 

7 them to the city, and bound them in prison. And when 
Habbib had heard of this which had taken place, he 
considered in his mind, and meditated in his thoughts, 
"It is expedient for me that I go and appear before the 15 

01 

Judge of the country '), rather than that I should remain 
in secret, and others enter and be crowned on my ac- 
count, and I find myself in great disgrace. For how will 
the name of Christian help him who fleeth from the 

confession of Christianity? Lo, if he flee from this, the 20 

g « 

death of nature is before him whithersoever he goeth, 

o ~~ 

and he is not able to escape from it, because this is 
decreed against all the children of Adam", 

8 And Habbib arose and went to Edessa secretly, having 

o 

prepared his back for the stripes, and his sides for the SB 
tearing of the combs, and his body for the burning of 
fire. And he went into the courtyard a ) to Theotecna, a 
veteran, who was the chief of the Governor's guard, and 
said to him, U I am Habbib of Tel-she, whom ye are 

9 seeking'*. And Theotecna said to him, "If it be that no 30 



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115 



man saw thee when thou earnest to me, obey me 
who am speaking to thee, and depart and go whither 
thou wast before, and be there at this time, and this 
that thou didst come to me and speak with me, and 
s that I advised thee thus, let no man know or be aware 
of; and about thy family and the inhabitants of thy 
village do not be anxious at all, for no man will hurt 
them at all, but they will remain a few days in the 
prison, and the Governor will then dismiss them, be- 

10 cause the Emperors have not commanded any thing 
bad or dreadful concerning them : but if thou wilt not 
be persuaded by me in these things which I have said 
to thee, I am free of thy blood, because if it be that 
thou appear before the Judge of the country, thou wilt 

ts not escape from death by fire, according to the com- 
mand of the Emperors, which they have given concer- 
ning thee". 

Habbib says to Theotecna, "As for me, it is not 10 
about my family and the inhabitants of my village that 

20 I am anxious, but about my own life, lest it should 
perish. Also I am much grieved about this, that I did 
not happen to be in my village on the day that the 
Governor inquired for me, and on my account, lo, many 
are thrown into irons, and I have been regarded by 

SB him as a fugitive. Wherefore, if so be thou wilt not be 
persuaded by me and take me in before the Governor, 
I by myself will go and make my appearance before 
him". And when Theotecna had heard him speak thus 11 
to him, he arrested him swiftly, and delivered him up 

30 to his domestics, and they brought him with him to 

the Governor's Court of Justice. And Theotecna had 

*gone in and made it known to the Governor, and had 



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Il6 TRANSLATIONS. 

said to him: "Habbib from Tel-she has come, whom 
thy lordship was searching after". And the Governor 
had said: "Who is it that has brought him? And where 
did they find him ? And what was he doing where he 
was?" Theotecna says to him: "He of his own free will 6 
has come hither without the constraint of any one, for 
no one was aware of him". 

12 And when the Governor had heard this, he was em- 
bittered against him much, and thus had he said: "This 
fellow, who has thus acted, has indeed shewn contempt 10 
towards me and has despised me, and has accounted 
me as no Judge ; even because he has thus acted, it is 

i-H 

not right that any mercy be shewn towards him, neither 

Q. 

that I should be in a hurry to pass sentence of death 
against him according to the command issued against 16 
him by the Emperors; but it is right for me to have 
patience with him, in order that his tortures and bitter 
sentence may be more increased, and through him I 
may terrify many from ever daring to flee". 

13 And when many people were gathered together and 20 
standing by him at the door of the judgement hall, some 
of them being his own Officials and others being the 
people of the city, there were some of them that were 
saying: "Thou hast done badly in coming and shewing 
thyself to those who where searching for thee, without 25 
the constraint of the Judge"; and there were those again 
who were saying to him : "Thou hast done well in 
coming and shewing thyself of thine own free will, rather 
than that the constrait of the Judge should bring thee ; 
for now is thy confession of the Messiah known to be by 30 
thine own will, and not by the constraint of men", 

13a But the things, which the city Informers had heard 



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from those who were saying (this) to him, while they 
were standing at the door of the judgement hall, and 
also the fact that- he had gone secretly to Theotecna, and 
he had not wished to denounce him, had been heard 
6 by the city Informers 1 ), and they made known to the 
Judge every thing that they had heard. And the Judge 
was angry against those who had been saying to Habbib, 
"Wherefore didst thou come and shew thyself to the 
Judge, without constraint from the Judge himself?" And 

10 to Theotecna he had said: "It was not right for a man, 
who has been made the chief of his comrades, thus to 
act deceitfully towards his own ruler, and frustrate the 
Emperors' command, which they issued against Habbib 
the rebel, that he should be burned with fire". Theo- 

15 tecna says: "Towards my comrades I have not acted 
deceitfully, neither to frustrate the edict which the Em- 
perors issue have I looked; for what am I before thy 
lordship, that I should dare to do it? But I strictly 
questioned him as to that which thy lordship also has 

20 inquired at my hands, in order that I might know and 
see whether it was of his own free will that he came 
hither, or whether the constraint of thy lordship had 
not brought him by the hand of others; and when I 
had heard from him that he had come of his own will, 

25 I carefully brought him to the honourable door of the 
Court of Justice of thy rectitude". 

And the Governor gave orders instantly, and they jj 
brought in Habbib before him. The guard says: "Lo, 
he standeth before thy lordship"'). And he began to 



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1) See above, § 3, and Notes, p. 175 f. 

2) Sec ASD 65 1 8 (Barsamya), 



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Il8 TRANSLATIONS. 

interrogate him thus, and said to him: "What is thy 
name ? and whence art thou ? and what art thou ?" He 
says to him: "Habbib is my name, and I am from the 

15 village Tel-she, and I have been made a deacon". The 
Governor says: "Wherefore hast thou transgressed thee 
command of the Emperors, and dost minister in thine 
office, which is forbidden to thee by the Emperors, and 
art not willing to sacrifice to Zeus, whom the Emperors 
worship?" Habbib says: "We Christians do not worship 
the works of men, which are not anything themselves, :o 

■ neither are their makers anything ; but we worship God 

16 who made men". The Governor says: "Stand not with 
that audacious mind with which thou art come before 
me, insulting Zeus the great glory of the Emperors". 
Habbib says: "If this Zeus is not an idol, the work of 15 
men, thou hast said well that I insult him ; but if the 
carving of him out of wood and fixing of him with nails 
cry out against him that he is a thing made, how sayest 
thou to me that I insult him, for lo, his insult is from 

17 himself and against himself!" The Governor says: "By 2Q 
this very thing that thou art not willing to worship 
him, thou insuttest him". Habbib says: ''And if because 

I do not worship him I insult him, how great an insult 
then has the carpenter inflicted on him, who carved 
him out with an axe of iron, and the smith, who struck 25 

18 him and fixed him up with nails !" And when the 
Governor had heard that he spake thus, he had com- 
manded him to be scourged unsparingly. And when he 
had been scourged of five, he said to him : "Wilt thou 
now obey the Emperors? And if thou wilt not obey, I sq 
will indeed tear thee with combs, and with all kinds 
of torture I will torture thee, and then at last I will 



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give orders against thee, that thou be burnt with fire". 
Habbib says: "These threats, which, lo, thou art now 
frightening me with, are much less and smaller than 
those which I had already made up my mind to endure; 
B therefore I came and made my appearance before thee". 
The Governor says: "Put him in the iron fetter 1 ) for l8a 
murderers, and let him be scourged as he deserves: and 
when he was being scourged they say to him: "Sacri- 
fice to the gods !" and he was crying aloud and saying : 
10 "Anathema are your idols, and they who worship them 
with you are like you!" And the Governor gave orders, 
and they took him up to the prison, they did not give 
him permission to speak with his own family and the 
inhabitants of his village, according to the command of 

rsi 

15 the judge. Now the day was the Emperors' festival 2 ), 

01 

But on the second of September the Governor had 1Q 
given orders, and they had brought him from the prison, 
and had said to him: "Wilt thou renounce that in which 
thou standest, and obey the edict of our Lords the 

SO Emperors r But if thou wilt not obey, I will make thee 
obey them by bitter tearings of combs". Habbib says: 
"I have not obeyed them, nor is it set in my mind to 
obey them, not even if thou sentence me to sentences 
worse even than those which the Emperors have decreed." 

25 The Governor says: "By the Gods I swear, that unless iga 
thou wilt sacrifice, I will not omit anything hard and 
bitter that I will not torture thee with: and we shall 
see if the Messiah, whom thou worshippest, will deliver 
thee'*. Habbib says: "All those who worship the Messiah 

3d are those who are delivered by the Messiah, that they 



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2) See p. 33 and Notes, p. 176. 



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T20 TRANSLATIONS. 

should not worship creatures together with the Creator 

igb of the creatures'". The Governor says: "Let him be 

stretched out and be beaten with whips, until there 

remain not a place in his body, on which he has not 

been beaten". Habbib says: "These afflictions, which & 

thou hast supposed to be bitter in their stripes, of them 

are platted crowns of victory for those who endure 

19c them". The Governor says: "How can ye call afflictions 

recreation, and account the torments of your bodies a 
00 

crown of victory?" Habbib says: "It is not for thee to 10 

ask me about these things, because thine unbelief does 

not deserve to hear the arguments for these things. That 

iqd I will not sacrifice, I have said and I say". The Governor 

says: "Thou, because thou deservest them, art standing 

rsi 

in these sentences. I will put out those eyes of thine, 15 
which look upon this Zeus and are not afraid of him ■ 
and I will stop thine ears, which hear the laws of the 
Emperors and are not terrified". Habbib says: "God, 
whom thou deniest here, hath another world, and there 
thou wilt confess Him with stripes, although thou mayest £0 
ige further deny Him". The Governor says: "Let that world 
alone about which thou hast spoken, and attend now to 
this trial in which, lo, thou standest, for there is no one 
who is able to deliver thee from it, unless the Gods 
deliver thee if thou sacrifice to" them". Habbib says: as 
"Those who die for the name of the Messiah, and wor- 
ship not things made and creatures, will find their lives 
in the presence of God: and those who love the life 
of this present time more than that, their torment is 
for ever". 80 

20 And the Governor gave order, and they hanged him 
up and tare him with the combs, and as they were 



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I.IABBI 13. 121 

tearing him with the combs they dragged him about : 
and he was hanging a long while, until the shoulder- 
' blades of his arms creaked : ). The Governor says to 21 
him: "Wilt thou be persuaded even now to put in- 

6 cense before this Zeus r" Habbib says: ''Before these 
sufferings I was not persuaded by thee; now that, lo, 
I have suffered them, how thickest thou that I should 
be persuaded by thee, to lose by them that which I 
have gained by them?" The Governor says: "By sen- 22 

10 tences fiercer and bitterer than these I am prepared to 
make thee obey, according to the Emperor's command, 
until thou do their will", Habbib says: "Thou art sen- 
tencing me for not having obeyed the command of the 
Emperors, who lo, thyself also, whom the Emperors 

15 have raised and made a judge, hast transgressed their 
command, in that thou hast not done to me, what the 
Emperors commanded thee". The Governor says: "Be-23 
cause I have had patience with thee dost thou say thus, 
like a man bringing an accusation?" Habbib says: "If 

20 thou hadst not scourged me and bound me, and torn 
me with combs and put my feet into the stocks, it 
might have been supposed that thou hadst had patience 
with me: but if these things have intervened, where is 
the patience towards me of which thou hast said?" The 24 

25 Governor says: "These things which thou hast said will 
not help thee, because they are all of them against thee, 
and they will bring upon thee afflictions which are 
bitterer even than those which the Emperors have com- 
manded". Habbib says: "If I had not been aware that 

30 they will help me, I should not have spoken at all 



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16 



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122 TRANSLATIONS. 

24a about them before thee". The Governor says: "I will 
silence these words of thine, and at the same time 
appease the Gods about thee for thy not having wor- 
shipped them, and I will quiet the Emperors' mind 
about thee, because thou hast rebelled against their 8 
commands". Habbib says: "I am not afraid of the death 
which thou threatenest me with, for had I been afraid 
of it, I should not have gone about from house to house, 
and ministered : for its sake it was that I did so minister". 
25 The Governor says: "How is it that thou worshippest 10 
and adorest a man, and this Zeus thou art not willing 
to worship and honour?" Habbib says: "A man I wor- 

1-1 

ship not, because it is written for me, 'Cursed is every 
one that putteth his trust in man'; but God, who took 

rsi 

. 26 a body and became man, I worship and glorify". The 15 

01 

Governor says : tt Do thou what the Emperors have 
commanded , and what is in thy mind is thine : if thou 
be willing to let it go, well and good, and if thou be not wil- 
ling, then do not leave it". Habbib says : "Both these things 
cannot be, because falsehood is contrary to truth, nor 20 
is it possible for that thought to be taken away which 
271s firmly fixed in my mind". The Governor says: "By 
bitterer and harder tortures, I will make thee put away 
from thy thoughts, that of which thou saidst, 'It is 

O 

firmly fixed in my mind'". Habbib says: "These aftlic- 25 
tions about which thou supposest that by them it will 
be rooted up from my thoughts, it is by them it groweth 
in the midst of my thoughts like a tree bearing fruit". 
28 The Governor says: "What help can stripes and tearing 
of combs give to this tree of thine ? and more especially 30 

3 o 

at the time that I order fire against it, to burn it un- 
sparingly"* Habbib says: "Not at those things which 

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123 



thou lookest at do I look, because I contemplate the 
things which are not seen, and on this account I do the 
will of God who makes, and not that of an idol that is 
made, which cannot even feel any thing". The Governor 2Q 
5 says: "Because he thus denies the gods whom the Em- 
perors worship, let more tearing of combs be added to 
his former combings; for in the many questions which 
I have had the patience with him to ask him, he has 

forgotten his former tearings of combs". And while they 
00 

]0 were tearing him he was crying aloud and saying: "The 

sufferings of this time are not worthy to be compared 

with the glory which is to be revealed in those that 

love the Messiah" '). 

Q- 

And when the Governor saw that not even under 3^ 

rsi 

15 these afflictions he would sacrifice, he said to him; "So 
your doctrine teaches you that you should hate your own 
bodies?" "Habbib says: "Our bodies we do not hate; 
it is indeed written for us: 'Whosoever will lose his life 
shall find it'; but another thing also is written for us, 

sz ® 

20 'that we should not give that which is holy to dogs, 
and that we should not cast pearls before swine'". The 3 1 
Governor says: "1 know that all thou sayest thus 
is in order that my rage and the anger of my mind 
may be excited, and that I should give sentence of 

25 death against thee speedily. I will not therefore be 
hurried on to that which thou desirest, but I will have 
patience; not, indeed, for thy ease, but in order that 
the affliction of thy tortures may be increased, and that 
thou mayest see thy flesh falling off before thee by the 

30 combs which are passing over thy sides". Habbib says: 



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1 24 TRANSLATIONS. 

"I also am looking to this, that thou shouldest multiply 
32 thy tortures upon me as thou hast said". The Governor 
says: "Comply with the Emperors, who have authority 
to do whatsoever they will". Habbib says: "There are 
no men who do whatsoever they will, but only God, B 
whose authority is over heaven and over all the inha- 
bitants of the earth ; nor is there any one that can 
blame His actions and say to Him 'What doest thou?'" 

33 The Governor says: "For this isolence of thine death 
by the sword is too little; but I am prepared to decree 10 

o 

against thee a death bitterer than that of the sword". 
Habbib says: But I look for a death more lingering 
than that of the sword, which thou wilt decree against 
me at the time that thou wishest 7 . 

r-- 

rsi 

34 And afterwards the Governor began to give the sen- 15 
tence of death against him : and he called out aloud 
before his corps of officials, and says, the nobles of the 
city also hearing him: "Habbib, this fellow who has 
denied the Gods, as ye also have heard from him, and 

J: <u 

has likewise insulted the Emperors, it is ritjht that his 20 
life also should be wiped out from under this honoured 
sun. and that he should not see this light, the associate 

o 9 

of the Gods ; and were it not that it has been com- 
manded by former Emperors that the corpses of mur- 
derers should be buried , it would be right that the 25 
corpse of this fellow should not even be buried, because 
he has been so insolent. I command that a strap be 
cast into his mouth as into the mouth of a murderer, 
and that he be burned by a slow lingering fire, that 
the torture of his death may be increased". 30 

35 And he went out from the presence of the Governor 
with the strap thrust into his mouth, and a multitude 



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HABBIB. 125 

of the people of the city was running after him. Now 
the Christians were rejoicing that he had not turned 
aside nor abandoned his state of life, and the Pagans were 
threatening him because he would not sacrifice. And 
5 they took him out by the Western Gate, (the Gate) of 
the Arches '), over against the cemetery which was built 
by 'Abshelama, Abgar's son. Now his mother was clad 
in white, and she was going out with him. 

And when he had arrived at the place where they 3^ 
10 were going to burn him, he stood up and prayed, and 

CO 

all those that were going out with him, and he said : 

O 

"King Messiah, thou to whom belongs this world and the 

world to come, look and see, that though I was able to 

flee from these afflictions, I did not flee, that I might not 

15 fall into the hands of thy justice: let this fire, in which 

I am to be burned, be to me for a recompense before 
■a en 

thee, so that I may be delivered from that fire which 

is not quenched , and receive my spirit in thy pre- 
sence into the spirit of thy Godhead, glorious Son of 

20 the adorable Father!" And when he had prayed, he 
turned and blessed them, and they gave him the salu- 
tation as they wept, men and women, and they say to 
him : "Pray for us in the presence of thy Lord, that he 
would make His peace for His people, and renewal for 

25 His churches which are cast down". 

And while Habbib was standing they dug a place, og a 
and took him and set him in the midst of it, and they 
fixed up by him a stake. And they came to bind him 
to the stake, and he said to them; "I will not stir from 

30 this place in which ye are going to burn me". And 37 



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126 TRANSLATIONS. 

they brought faggots and set them in order, and placed 
them on all sides of him ; and when the fire burnt up 
and its flames ascended fiercely they called out to him, 

38 "Open thy mouth!" And the moment he opened his 
mouth his soul had mounted up ') ; and they exclaimed, 5 
both men and women, with the voice of weeping. And 
they drew him and took him up out of the fire, and 
they threw over him fine linen and choice unguents and 
spices, and they seized upon some of the faggots for 
burning him, and they carried him, both brethren and 10 

CO 

men of the world 2 ), and wrapped him up and buried him 

o 

by Guria and Shmona the martyrs, in the same grave 

rsi 

in which they were placed, on the hill which is called 
Beth Alah Kikla, saying over him psalms and hymns 
38a and carrying his burnt body in procession affectionately IB 
and honourably 3 ). And even some Jews and Pagans 
took part in shrouding and burying his body with the 
Christian brethren. Now at the time of his burning, and 
also at the time when they buried him, there was one 
spectacle of grief spread over those within and those 20 
without, and tears were running down from all eyes, 
while every one was giving glory to God , for whose 

to tn 

Name he had given his body to the burning of fire. 
9 ^ 

39 Now the day on which he was burned was f Saturday f 4 ), 

the second of September, on the day that it was heard 25 



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■that Constantine the Great had begun to depart from 
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1) Compare Matt. XXVII 50 in syr.S. 

2) For the use of this term, see p. 23. 

3) See Notes, p. 1 79. 

4) Saturday] & 1 : the Syriac MS has 'Friday'. Reasons for following 
CO 1 here rather than the Syriac are given on p. 30. 



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HABBIB. 127 

city of Italy, that he might carry on the war with 
Licinius, who at this day has the dominion over the 
Eastern parts of the Roman dominions; and, lo, the 
countries are in commotion on all sides, because no man 
b knoweth which of them will be victorious and continue 
it) the power of the empire. And at this news the per- 39 a 
secution relaxed a little from the churches, Now the 
Notaries wrote down every thing that they had heard 
from the Judge : and the city Informers wrote the rest 

10 of the things which were said outside the door of the 
judgement hall, and as was the custom they made known 
to the Judge all that they heard and saw, and their 
sentences are recorded in their Acts. 

I, Theophilus, who had renounced the evil inheritance 40 

16 of my fathers, and confessed the Messiah, gave diligence 
and wrote a copy of these Acts of Habbib, as I had 
formerly written of Guria and of Shmona, his fellow- 
martyrs ! ) ; and inasmuch as he had called them happy 
in their death by the sword, he resembled them himself 

20 also in his being crowned by the burning of fire. And 
that I have written the year, and the month, and the 
day of the crowning of these Martyrs, is not for the 
sake of those who like me saw the deed, but so that 
they who come after us might learn what was the time 

25 of these Martyrs, and which are commemorated also in 
the Acts of the former Martyrs, who (lived) in the days 
of the Emperor Domitianus 3 ), and of the rest of the 
Emperors who also had made a persecution against the 
church, and likewise had killed many with stripes and 



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128 TRANSLATIONS, 

with combings and with bitter afflictions, and with 
keen-edged swords, and with burning fire, and in the 
terrible sea, and in the merciless mines — and all these 
things and things like them, for the hope of the future 
reward. 5 

Now the afflictions of these Martyrs, and of those 
whom I had heard of, opened the eyes of me, Theo- 
phihis, and enlightened my mind, and I confessed the 
Messiah, that he is the Son of God, and that he is God. 
And may the dust of these Martyrs' feet ] ), which I re- 10 
ceived as I ran after them at the time of their going 
forth to be crowned, get me pardon for having denied 
Him, and may He confess me before those who worship 
Him, who have confessed Him now ! 

Now with the twenty-seventh question that the judge 15 
asked Habbib he gave against him sentence of death 
to be burned with fire 3 ). 



1) See Notes, p. 179. 2) See Notes, p. 180 f. 



HERE ENDETH THE MARTYRDOM OF HABBIB 
THE DEACON. 



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THE STORY OF EUPHEMIA. 

The Story of the Holy Sophia and of Euphemia her daughter, 1 
who were from the City of Edessa, 

To-day it behoves us to sing with the spiritual prophet 
David rt The Lord is nigh unto the broken in heart and 
the lowly in spirit doth He save", and again "The Lord 
is nigh, unto them that call upon Him in truth, and 
5 doth good pleasure for them that fear Him". And the 
divine Apostle Paul teacheth us, saying "All your anxiety 
cast upon God, for He careth for you". 

A miracle, then, that was performed in the blessed 
city of Edessa some time ago do we announce before 
10 you, O faithful brethren of ours, and sons of Holy 2 
Church! A certain man, faithful and true and worthy 

u 

of good remembrance, and by rank a presbyter of the 
clergy of the holy church there, at Edessa, who was 
Paramonarius (i.e. Custodian) in the holy temple of the 

Variants of the Paris MS (B.N. Syr. 234)=:?. 



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Title in P : Item, the Story of Euphemia and Sophia her daughter, 
and of the Miracle that was performed for them by the Confessors 
Shmona and Guria {Add, in mg. and Habbib) — their prayer be with 
us, Amen ! 

2 Ps XXXIV 19 3 Ps CXLV l8f. 5 good pleasure] see 

Notts, p. 183 6 Paul] P < 7 I Pet V 7 S blessed] P < 

9 announce] P repeat 10 brethren of ours, and] P < 11 and 

true] P < 12 and by rank] P < 13 there, at] P of 

14 temple] P church 

17 



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1 30 TRANSLATIONS. 

Shrine of the Confessors, - — he transmitted to us the story 
of this miracle that came to pass in his days, as he 
learned from the mouth of the girl and her mother, 
after God had wrought deliverance for her and she had 
returned to her country and the home of her kindred c 
by means of the help and power that dwells and abides 
at all times where He the bones of the Holy ones and 
Confessors: this story, when that excellent old man 
heard it, he feared to hide and conceal and hold his 
peace about, and not to transmit to the generations that 10 

CO 

come after the deliverance of this great miracle, which 

o 

by the working of the suretyship of those Martyrs and 

3 Athletes, the Confessors, he heard and saw. And inas- 
much as he trusted that with correctness he affirmed 

rsi 

and spoke truth, he transmitted this story to us so that H 

it might be possible that we should repeat it. And be- 

"a en 

cause the thing is simple and unphilosophical and the 
understanding of the old man weak, do not let the story 
of this wonderful thing be despicable in your eyes be- 
cause of the simplicity of him who wrote it down. 20 

4 In the year 707 by the reckoning of the Greeks 
[= 396 AD.] the Huns had come forth, and they cap- 

o g 

I he] P who 3 learned] P pr. had 6 power] P pr. divine 

6 — 8 dwells , , . . Confessors] P is where lie the bones of the Holy 
ones, the true Confessors, and broods (there) at all tunes 

8 — io this slory , , . , about] P and this excellent old man was alax- 
- med to conceal and hold his peace and hide it 
IO generations] P -{- and to the ages 

12 — 13 Martyrs .... Confessors] P victorious Athletes and Confessors 
13 — 14 inasmuch as] P because 
14 — 15 with correctness .... and] P < 
18 — 19 the story .... thing] P this great miracle 
20 simplicity .... down] P lowliness of the thing 
22 Hups P (= ££)] L Persians in the mg n and also in the text^ but 
on an Rrasitrt\ tit pp. J 2 1 74 



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EUFHEMIA, 131 

tured many captives and laid waste the country and they 
came as far as Edessa. And Addai, the Military Governor 
(Stratelates) at that time, did not give permission for 
the Foederaii to go out against them because of trea- 
6 chery in the midst, and for this cause the armies of 
the Romans came down and lived in Edessa for a time. 
Now a certain Goth of a fierce temper from that army 5 
of the Romans was staying in a house, billeted upon a 
certain believing widow whose name was Sophia, and 
10 she had one virgin orphaned daughter, the only child 

o 

she had. -And needfully and carefully did her mother 
keep her, and as was fitting she was bringing her up in 

1— 1 

all modesty, and was keeping her close in hiding that 
that wicked Goth should not see her. And as for the 

rsi 

15 girl herself, her name was Euphemia, and in her ap- 

QJ 

pearance she was very beautiful. 

And when the Goth had been a long space of time 6 

with them it fell out that for an instant he saw the girl 

and was greatly inflamed with the desire of her, and 

20 with the love of her his soul was taken captive ; and 7 

from then he began with soft and gentle words to 

r*« ro 

wheedle the mother of the girl to give him (as he said) 

ID "K 

O 13 

22 — i arid they captured .... country] P into the territory of the 
Romans, and they laid waste the country and captured many captives 
4 Feeder a tt\ i.e. the Gothic Mercenaries: see Notes^ p. 1S4 
6 time] P fir. long 7 Goth] P man 8 of the Romans] P < 



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in a house . . . , upon] P with 10 one] P an only 

orphaned] P < ID — II the .... had] P < 

II — 13 And .... hiding] P And her mother was heedful of her, and 
was bringing her up in all modesty, and was keeping her continually 
in hiding 15 — 16 and in .... beautiful] P and she, the girl, was 

beautiful 17 — 19 And when , . . . desire of her] P Now it chanced 

that he saw that girl and desired her 20 taken] P -|- away 

2 1 from then] P < with . . . words] P < 



22 girl] P + with words (as he said)] P < 



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132 TRANSLATIONS. 

her daughter Euphemia in marriage to be his wife. But 
her believing mother when she heard it was much agi- 
tated and was afraid of him, and did not accept his 
suit. But that bad man did not cease from vexing her 
with disturbing words in this wise, and sometimes it 5 
was with fury that he met her, and sometimes with 

8 words of gentleness and of flattery, and with mighty 
oaths he was wheedling her, and displaying gold too 
and shewing it before her, making pretexts in all manner 
of ways that she should give him her free-born daughter. 10 

9 Then she hid her daughter that he should not even 
see her, saying to him "Man, what have I to do with 

i-H 

thee? Why dost thou vex me, that am desolate and a 

6. 

widow, and cannot at all do this". But he was full of 

rsi 

cunning in his guile and promised her many things. 16 

But she said further to him: "And how can this be, 
seeing that thou hast, I do not know how many times 
over, a wife in thine own country and sons?' 1 But the 
rogue insisted and swore, and ventured on oaths by 
God, falsely declaring "No wife at all have I taken nor 20 
have I got sons". And he brought the gold that he had 
displayed and put it before her, saying: "Lo, see that 
I have no wife; for lo, much gold for thy daughter have 
I displayed and many good things I will do for her". 



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I to be his wife] P < 2 — 3 her believing » . , . and] P the 
believing woman 4 that bad] P the cease] P abstain 

5 with .... this wise] P < 7 words .... and of] am, P 

9 — 10 shewing .... ways] P made pretexts from all sides 

II Then] P Iiut 12 — 13 w!lat thee?] P < 13—14 P a 

widow and desolate 1 4 at all] P < was] P being 

15 and promised] P when he promised (sic) 19 — 20 and ven- 
tured falsely] P < 20 at all] P < 22 Lo, see] P See 

24 displayed] P pr. taken and 



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EUPHEM1A. 133 

And again she said to him: "Man, why dost thou 
vex me? take thyself away from me". And he still made 
himself firm against her, mingling even oaths with flat- 
teries. 
5 And when he had greatly worn her out, and for 10 
many days to this intent was vexing her, she was over- 
come like a weak woman and gave up opposition in 
her mind, saying "God of the orphans and the widows, 
come to my help! My God, this business is entrusted 
10 to Thee, to whom alone it is revealed !" And it was a 

o 

greatly vexed question between the mother of the girl 

and the Goth, she saying: "I cannot bear to let my 
1-1 

daughter be separated from me all this distance". But 

he was swearing by God "I will not remove her from 

rsi 

16 thy side, and by thee we will settle". 

And when the woman heard the oaths of the wicked 11 
man, she was reconciled to fulfil his will, and then 
forthwith they made a deed of dowry and she gave her 
daughter in marriage. 

SO And after a time God gave that there should be peace, 
and the order came that this wicked man should depart 
to his own country with the rest of the Goths that 

ID "K 
O g 

I And again she] P But the woman again 2 vex me] P + 

who am a solitary woman And] P Hut 2 — 3 made himself 

firm] P excited himself 3 — 4 mingling .... flatteries] P and was 



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multiplying oaths 5 — 6 and for .... vexing her] P < 7—8 in 

her mind] P < 9 My God] P God this] P the 

10 alone] P < 14 by God] P mighty oaths 

14 — 15 "1 .... settle"] P "If thou givest her to me, we will quickly 
come from our country, I and she, and we will both establish ourselves 
by thee" 16 And when] P Then when 16 — 17 the oaths.... 

man] P these mighty oaths 17 she .... his will] P she gave up 

opposition 17 — iS then forthwith] P < 18 a deed] P deeds 

gave] P -\- him 21 the order] P pr, when wicked] P 

audacious 22 — 3 with the rest .... And] P < 



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134 TRANSLATIONS. 

were with him, and it was arranged that Euphemia 
also whom he had married he should take with him 

12 where he was departing to. And her mother began to 
affirm that this should never be, and that her daughter 
should not go with him , because she was obviously 5 
with child. 

13 And when she had struggled much and many days 
had raised a dispute over this, at the last she was over- 
come, and she could not save her daughter and keep 
her behind from going with him. LO 

And when it was decided about the separation of her 
only child, she took the liar her son-in-law and her 
daughter, and brought them up to the martyr-shrine of 
the holy Confessors Guria and Shmona and Habbib, and 
they were praying, the mother with that daughter of 16 
hers, with lamentable tears. 

And when they had sealed their prayer with a tear 
the mother of the girl drew near and took hold of her 
by her right hand and set her upon the Coffin of the 
Confessors themselves, saying to her false son-in-law 20 
"Give me for a surety the hidden power that dwells on 
these Holy Ones ! Both thou dost know, and they do, 

14 according as thou dost treat her!" But the blessed ones 
themselves she exhorted, saying: "I beseech you, vic- 
torious saints of God, go with her and stand up for her 25 
in the country of the stranger, for to God and to you 

3 her] P the girl's 4 that this .... and] P < 7- — 12 And 

when .... only child] P And when she could not save her from him, 
and was overcome by him 15 — 16 with .... hers] P and her 

daughter 17 sealed .... tear] P prayed 20 Confessors] P 

jJr, holy false] P lying 22 these Holy] F pr. the bones of 

22 — 23 Both .... treat her] P Both thou and they — thou knowest, 
as thou dost deal with her (sic) 24 — 25 I . . . . God] P < 



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EUPHEMIA. I3S 

I trust on her behalf". And the Goth drew near and 
laid his hand and took her from the Coffin of the Holy 
ones, saying "As I deal with her and do unto her, so 
may God deal with me ! Lo, these Holy ones are sureties 
& that I will not grieve her!'* And they all prayed, and 
they went down from thence, but her mother was in 
bitter sorrow and in constant weeping by night and by 
day that she was deprived of the care and the sight of 
her daughter. 
10 And when the girl went off with that Goth and they 15 

CO 

had gone many stages and had arrived at one stage off 

the city where they were going, then he rose up against 

her like a destroying wolf and stripped off her rich 

i clothing that she was clothed with, and unloosed from 

rsi 

16 her the gold with which she was festooned, and clothed 
her in the costume of a slave-girl. Then he revealed to 
her all the treachery he had practised on her, saying 
to her "I have a wife and I have married her, lo, this 
long while. But hold thy peace, and do not reveal be- 

ao fore her or before any body else what has passed be- 
tween us: otherwise an evil death thou wilt die at the 

o ~~ 

hands of her family and tribesmen, for they are well 
known in our country". 

And when the girl heard these things she sighed be- 16 
2B fore God and lifted up her voice in her weeping, beating 
her face and her breast and scattering dust on her head 



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3 and do unto her] P < 4 sureties] P pr. my 5 all] P < 

6 from thence] P < S deprived of] P separated from 10 And 

when] P But when 12 where .... going] V of the treacherous one 

then] P < 13 — 14 her rich clothing] P the rich clothes 

16 costume of a. slave-girl (=: Gkf\ Pcorr c. of slave-girls } L, (P*?) 
clothes of widowhood: see p. 76 18 lo] P < 19 while] P -\- 

for years 22 her] P the woman's 25 her weeping] P < her 

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I36 TRANSLATIONS. 

and on her face, and thus she was saying to him, the 
poor lonely thing, to that Goth, as she wept : "Thanks 
for thy kindness, man, for what thou hast done by me 
and by my state as a stranger here ! Thanks for thy 
kindness, robber, stealing away freemen by day, that 5 
thou hast revealed to me that I am a slave-girl and hast 
fettered me with the yoke of slavery, and hast not killed 
me with drawn sword! These are thy promises! This is 
the covenant of thy oaths ! Well, then, I will call to the 
sureties, that were between me and thee, and that mighty 10 

CO 

Power which is hidden in the bones of the Martyrs. Well, 

o 

then, on the sureties that thou gavest me, what time 
thou stretchedst forth thy audacious hand and tookest 
me from them, do I cast my hope and on their Lord — 
beware what thou doest with me !" IB 

01 

17 And these things did the defrauded and lonely crea- 

ture repeat in her prayer, as with lamentations she was 

weeping and saying: "God of my fathers, arise for me 

in the country of the stranger and save me and deliver 

me from the hands of this traitor that has rewarded me 20 
s. oj 

evil things for good and hatred for love ! To you there- 

fore I call, to the Confessors, my sureties! See the 

to tn 

freedom fettered in the yoke of slavery! God, that didst 

accompany Joseph and wast a companion to him in 

i 

the land of the Egyptians, turn not away Thine eyes 25 



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3 by me and] P < 5 by day,] f "t* Thanks for they kindness 

S drawn] P pr. thy 9 — 10 to the sureties] P to my sureties 

10 mighty] P < 12—13 what time thou] P and 13 audacious] P 

treacherous 1 5 beware . . . . me] P see what he has done with me 

16 And these] P These 17 — 18 as .... and] P and weeping 

with lamentation she was 21 things] P < 21 — 22 To 

you to the] P < 23 — 24 that didst to Mm] P that wast 

to Joseph a companion 



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EUPHEMIA. 137 

from me ! Thou carest, O my Lord, for the servitude of 

freemen!" 

And when they arrived and entered his house, that 18 

wife of the Goth saw the girl that she was fair and 

5 comely, and forthwith she was perturbed and agitated, 

and began to ask her husband "Whence is this girl, 

and what is her history? And what is her country, and 

what is she doing with thee?" But that wicked one 

said "She is thy slave, and I have brought her for thee 
00 

10 from Syria." And she answered and said to him: ^Indeed 

thou art lying, for her appearance is witness that she 

is not like the slave-girls." And he again replied to her 

"I tell the truth, that she is thy slave." Now the lonely ig 

girl, when she saw what had befallen her, prepared her- 

15 self to serve in slavery, while by night and by day she 
was calling on God and saying only this: ft My God, keep 
not Thy help far from me! Holy Martyrs, rise up forme 
in the land of the stranger! Confessors, my sureties, see 
my servitude and judge judgement for my oppression!" 

20 Now her mistress used to speak with great hatred and 
great enmity to her, and was using her with indignity 
and boxing her ears continually. And the girl did not 

ID "K 

O 3 

2 freemen I] P -J- Confessors! from you he took me, and in you my 
mother confided! 3 they] P he that] P and the 

4 — 5 and comely] P <£ 5 and] P < 

IO she answered and] P again she 11 is witness that she] P <^ 

12 like] P + that of P 
12 — 13 And .... slave"] P But he was cavilling "she is thy slave" 

13 lonely] P < 
14 — 15 prepared .... serve in] P subjected herself to 

16 calling on God] P weeping much 
16 — 17 My Cod .... far from me] P <^ 

17 Holy Martyrs] P Confessors, my sureties 
20 great hatred) P much hatred 



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138 TRANSLATIONS. 

know how to speak in her language or to appeal to 
her about anything, but only was weeping with sighing 
and calling the Confessors to her helpj for she was 
longing for somebody to speak Syriac with her, and 
there was no one but that Goth who had taken her 5 
away from the Syrian country, as from the length of 
time he had been in Edessa he had learnt to speak. 
And when the Goth woman had seen that the girl was 
with child she did not spare her, but all the more put 
additional hard work upon her and was demanding of 10 
her more than her strength, so that in one way or 
another she should end her life. 

20 And when the days had come near for the girl to 
bear, there was born to her a man-child, and he was 
like his father exceedingly; and when the wife of the 15 
Goth saw that the baby was like her husband she was 
struck with envy, and in great indignation she said to 
her husband; "Look and see how like he is to thee! 
Here therefore cavilling and lying are of no use to thee!" 
And when many times in indignation she had said this 20 
to him, he saith to her: "Thou hast authority over her; 
everything thou dost wish to do, do, for she is thy 
slave." 

21 Now this companion to Jezebel the murderess of the 
Prophets covered her self with zeal against the boy 26 
and took thought to kill it, and she brought out some 



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I in her, language] P with her in the language 

2 — 3 with sighing .... help] P <^ 3 for] P and 

6 the Syrian country] P her country length of] P < 

7 speak] P + a. little 1 1 more] P pr, to do 

13 And when] P Now when 14 and he] P who 

16 her husband] P his father 17 therefore] P < 

22 for] P < 24 Now] P Then 25 zeal] P envy 



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EUPHEMIA. 1 39 

murderous deadly poison that when there was oppor- 
tunity she might make the baby lick it and he should 
die, for she was exceedingly troubled by the sight of 
him. And on one of the days when the baby was crawling 
5 along it cuddled up against her supposing that she was 
its mother, and threw itself upon her; and she forth- 
with became exceedingly embittered and sent its mother 
away to market, to a place a long way off, on some 
excuse or other. And when she saw that its mother 

00 

10 was not near, she took that deadly poison and made the 

CO 

boy, or rather baby, lick it; and when the baby's mother 22 
came from where her mistress had sent her she sees 

i-H 

her son in a fit: and some of that deadly poison had 
been vomited up and it was congealed on the baby's 
15 lips! And say anything she could not, but only weep 
bitterly and call on the Confessors to her help. And 
she devised in her heart and brought a lock of wool 
and wiped from the lips of her son that deadly poison 
which the Goth woman had made him lick, and she 

— oj » 

30 laid it in her handkerchief and kept it with care. 

And after a little while the boy died and was buried. 
And a little time after the decease of the son of the23 
lonely and oppressed girl there was a supper made by 
the Goth, and his friends were invited. And in the even- 

o 

25 ing, when it was dark, she found a moment favourable 
to do by her mistress what she had done by her son, 
and that her wickedness should return on her own head, 



5 supposing] P and supposed 7 its] P the baby's 

II boy or rather] I 1 < 14 the baby's] P his 

1 5 only] V < 20 handkerchief] P pillow care] P pr, great 

21 after .... while] P < 

25 she] P the girl favourable] P + for her 

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HO TRANSLATIONS. 

and in the snare that she that she had hidden she 
might be caught even to the death. So when she was 
serving them as a maid and was mixing drink for them, 
the lock of wool with which she had wiped the lips of 
her son she took out from her handkerchief and dipped 6 
it in the cup of wine, saying: ft I shall see whether she 
made my son lick anything that he died : and if not, 
I shall know that it was by a death from God that my 
son died." 

And when she devised this, she mixed the cup and io 
gave it to the Goth's wife; and when her mistress took 
and drank that cup she too slept a deadly slumber, 

i-H 

and in the pit that she digged, in it she fell. And the 
Goth's wife died and was buried. 

rsi 

24 And after seven days of mourning for her the family 15 

01 

and kindred of the Goth woman woke up like lions, 
and the thought came over them that the stranger girl 
had given her the cup of deadly poison that she died 
of, and they devised against her to deliver her up to 
the judge. And because the judge was far from that 20 
place, the counsel approved itself to their heart that 
they should bind her in the tomb by the stinking corpse 
and should shut the door in her face. And while they 
were dragging her along and beating her the people of 

si 

c 3 

I — 2 she might be] P she herself was 



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5 from her handkerchief] P < 9 my son] P he 

12 and drank that cup] P that cup from the girl and drank 

13 the pit] P + of death P 15 seven] P "7" 

17 girl] P slave-girl IS deadly poison] P death 20 the 

judge (1 )] P + and dp many tortures upon her because] P < 

21 the counsel .... heart] P and further the thought approved itself 
to them. 

22 tomb] P + of her mistress 23 And while] L* < And 
24 dragging her along] P making shipwreck of her 



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EUPHEMIA. 141 

the city saw her, and they were grieved for her. And 
after they had gone and bound her in the tomb by the 
corpses they took thought lest the people of the city 
should come and open for her and let her out, and they 
5 rolled a great and mighty stone and laid it at the door 
of it, so that no one should be able to roll the stone 
from the tomb. And they took thought further that hard 
by the tomb they would sleep all that night, and in 
the early morning they would take her out from the 

00 

10 tomb and impale her on a stake and shoot at her with 
arrows, because the judge was far from that place. 
And when they were hearing the sound of her weeping 

i-H 

and her anguish they had no pity for her. Now the 
smell of the stink of that corpse grew more stifling and 
IB was killing her, 

01 

Then she cried out in prayer unto God and said :25 
"God of Guria and of Shmona and of Habbib! God, 
for the truth of whose faith Thy Holy ones the Con- 
fessors gave their necks to the slaughter, God that didst 

20 receive their blood as a living and holy sacrifice, come 
to the help of Thy handmaiden! God that for sinners 
didst mount the Cross of shame, deliver me from this 
distress! Guria and Shmona and Habbib, pillars and 26 
props of Edessa the Blessed, quickly let your help over- 

25 take me! My sureties the Confessors, aid me in this hour!" 
Then God heard her cry and her supplication, and 27 



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i the city] V that city 
2 — 3 by the corpses] P with the corpse 

3 — 4 they took .... for her] P the people of the city had taken 
thought to come and open the tomb 

6 able] P + at all 6 — 7 roll the stone from] P open 

17 and of .... and of) P and .... and 
23—24 pillars .... Blessed] P < 



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142 TRANSLATIONS. 

of a sudden the fierce and stinking smell of the stench 
of the corpse was turned to a pleasant smell of spices, 
and in the likeness of three men they appeared to her 
with a great light, saying to her: "Fear not, Euphcmia; 
we are with thee and we will not leave thee! Quickly 6 
comes thy deliverance, for our bond is near to be ful- 
filled, and the faith of thy fathers is not to be oppressed," 
28 And there fell upon her a slumber and she slept, and 
2g by the Power to which everything is easy this unspeak- 
able miracle was wrought for her, as also unto the Pro- 10 

O 

phet Habakkuk in his time, in that when Daniel was 

hungry while he was lying in the midst of the den of 
1-1 

lions in Babylon a meal from Jerusalem by the hand 

of Habakkuk was sent to him: so also, by the Divine 

rsi 

Power that resides in the bones of the holy Martyrs 15 

QJ 

and Confessors to whom she called and in whom she 
had taken refuge, in that very night she found herself 
on the hill by the side of the Shrine of the holy Mar- 
3otyrs and Confessors. And when the East shewed, she 
felt stupefied as if from sleep, and she saw the holy go 
Martyr Mar Shmona in the likeness of an old man 
standing by her, and saying to her: "Dost thou know 
where thou art now, and where thou art standing?" 
But she lifted up her eyes and saw the holy Shrine of 
the Confessors, and as now the sun was risen she went 26 

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i and stinkbg] P < 2 of spices] P that were (sic) beyond price 

9 this] P an 12 the midst of] P < 

1 6 and Confessors] P the Confessors 

1 6 — 17 to whom .... refuge] P to whom she drew near 

1; herself] P that she was 18 on the hill] P + of Edessa 

18 — 19 P the Martyr-shrine of the holy Confessors 

21 Mar (=My Lord)] P < 

25 as ... . risen] P just while the sun was rising went] P goes 



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EUPHEMIA. 143 

to enter the holy Shrine of the Martyrs. Saith the blessed 
Shmona to her: "Lo, our bond is paid: go in peace I" 
And immediately he vanished from her, and she looked 31 
to the right and to the left and in every direction, but 
5 she saw him no more. 

And when she came to the door of the Shrine of 
the Martyrs, she heard the usual service, and she was 
filled with great joy and fear, and she was astonished and 
as in a dream she was seeing the affair. For the Froper 
10 Psalm for them was "With, my voice unto God I called, 
and He heard me; and I lifted up with my voice unto 

Him, and He answered me. In the day of my distress 

.-1 

I sought the Lord." And her heart rejoiced, and excee- 
dingly was she cheered with these words of the service 

rsi 

15 that they were performing. And she had drawn near by 

a) 

the Coffin of the Holy ones, the Confessors, and cast her- 
self before them and with much weeping she was saying 
"All that the Lord willeth He doth in heaven and in 
earth, that in the evening should be weeping and in 

20 the morning joy, for He hath sent from heaven and 
delivered me. Blessed be Thy Glory from Thy Place, 
O Lord, of whose praises heaven and earth are full ! 
Blessed is the habitation of Thy Holy ones — your bond 
is paid, holy Confessors! Blessed is the Power of your 

2b Lord, that doth dwell in your bones! No one that taketh 

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I holy] P < 3 vanished] P disappeared 

8 astonished] P astonishment (sic) 9 For the] P The 

10 Ps lxxvii if. 13 exceedingly] P < 

18 — 19 All . ... earth (Ps cxxxv 6)] P <: tee p. 73 

19 for that in (Ps, xxx 6)] P In should be] P < 

22 O Lord] P < 

23 Thy Holy] P the Holy 

23 — 24 — your .... Confessors!] P < 
25 dwell in] P dwell upon 



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144 TRANSLATIONS. 

refuge in you is ashamed! No one that doth flee to 
your shelter and run unto you is vanquished ! I confess 
to you, the oppressed slave-girl that hath been set free; 
I confess to you, the captive that hath returned to her 
country! For lo, in the evening I was at a great distance 6 
in the city of the Goth a captive, and now I am in 
the blessed City of Edessa, in the temple where lie your 
bones, my sureties and my saviours and my deliverers 
from them that were distressing me. Holy Is your habi- 
tation and adorable is the Power that resides in you!" 10 

o 

32 And when she had said these things, and lamentable 
tears from her eyes on the Coffin of the Holy ones she 

i-H 

was shedding, the custodian was looking at her mar- 
velling, and when they finished the service he drew near 

rsi 

unto her and was asking her and saying: "Woman, why 15 
art thou agitated, and what is thy business?" But the 
believing one repeated before him all the deed that God 
had done by her from the beginning even unto the end. 

33 And when the custodian heard these things, he was 
astonished at the greatness of the matter so as even 20 
to doubt, and he sought to be assured of the truth and 
he wished to learn the abode of her mother, and with 

o 9 

much diligence he sent and brought her mother that he 
might learn from her whether the matter was as her 
daughter said, 25 

Now when her mother heard, forthwith she was much 



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agitated, for that she supposed that she and her husband 

1 in you] P with you 2 and run unto you] P < 

6 now] P 4" in the morning 9 them .... me] P my distresses 

10 and adorable . ,., m you] P < 11 lamentable] P urgent 

13 marvelling] P in exasperation 15 and saying] P < 

17 the deed (Jit, 'business 1 )] P miracle 

25 said] P + to him 26 forthwith] P < 



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EUPHEM1A. 145 

had come. But when her mother had come up to the 
Shrine of the blessed Martyrs the Confessors she saw 
her daughter and did not recognise her for that she was 
clothed with garments of humiliation; but her daughter 
6 recognised her, her mother, and drew near and did 
obeisance to her. 

Now when her mother recognised that it was "her 

daughter, the minds of the two of them were stirred 

with love and affection, and they were embracing each 

10 other and they could not speak with one another for 

o 

much weeping. 

And when they had been much time thus, the brethren 34 
of the Shrine of the Martyrs gathered together, and 
every one that was found there at the Shrine of the 

rsi 

15 Martyrs was amazed at the weeping that was holding 
the two. Then the Custodian asked Euphemia to tell 
before her mother the tale she had told before him and 
she told before her mother and before those that chanced 
to be present the tale of what the Divine Power that 

20 dwells in the bones of the holy Martyrs the Confessors 

t 1/1 

had done unto her, and how the Holy ones had taken 
her forth from the tomb that she was bound in and 

o 9 

brought her many stages in the night. And every one 

that heard gave thanks and praised God, who doth the 

25 pleasure of them that fear Him. Now her mother sent 



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4 garments of humiliation] P humble garments 

7 recognised] P + her daughter and knew 

15 — 16 that was holding the two] P of the two 

16 Then (P and L corr v ^)] L* But bhe 

lg, — ig before (1 ) .... of what] P everything that 

20 in] P upon holy] P < 

21 the Holy ones] P they 

24 — 25 doth the pleasure of] P doth good pleasure for (change 0/ 
one letter): see Note on % l 

19 



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I40 TRANSLATIONS. 

and brought for her garments to put on and they stayed 
there all that day. 

But when the sun drew near to set, they went down 
to their houses giving thanks to God, for the abundance 
of His grace that He had done by them. Now after & 
the day was over the tale of this affair had gone forth 
in all the city, and her family and the people of her 
neighbourhood gathered together; and when they saw 
her, they rejoiced and gave thanks to God who doth not 
neglect those that worship Him. And while the women 10 
were staying together they were constant in prayer in 
the House of God, but on Sunday and on Friday they 
used to go up always and stay all day before the Coffin 
of the holy Martyrs in all modesty. 

rsi 

35 And after a little time that mighty Power of our is 

a) 

Creator, which is not be spoken or explained, shewed 
its vengeance as it is wont, and justice was aroused 
upon that wicked and lying man, the Goth; and by the 
Providence of God that was in this business the Goth 
came against his will to Edessa again with a certain 20 
General who had been sent by the Emperor to this place 
to keep it from the enemies, the Persians, I mean, and 
the Huns, who had agreed to make war in this country. 
And as Pharaoh was caught in the Red Sea, so also 

o 

this Goth was caught in the snare that he had hidden, 26 

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I brought] P pr. they 2 all] P < 3 sun] P day 

4 houses] see p. 147 10 5 — 6 Now .... over] P And after that day 
7 the people] P pr. all 10 And] P < 

I I together] P < they] P and 

12 — 13 but .... stay] P and on Friday and on Sunday they did 
not cease from going up and staying 

15 — 16 of our Creator] P that is in tbem 

20 again] P < 22 I mean] P < 

23 agreed] P been sent 25 this] P thai snare] P pr. very 



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EUPHEMIA. 147 

and the Lord returned to him his recompence upon his 
head, and the pit that he digged, in it he fell, and in 
the net that he had hidden was he taken that despised 
the oaths and had contempt for thesuretiship of the holy 
6 Martyrs, and trembled not at the fearful judgement of 
God. And Justice herself impelled him that in the very36 
place that he had despised the oaths and lied he should 
receive the punishment of requital for his treachery. 
And (so) on one of the days, when he, the Goth, 
10 was walking in the market, a certain man, their neigh- 
bour, saw him and spake with him, and he, the wicked 
and guilty fellow, just as if he did not know him or 

1-1 

recognise him passed by him in agitation and did not 

6. 

linger for him, nor did he speak with him, but over- 

rsi 

15 looked him as if not knowing him. And at once direct 
to the houses of Sophia and of Euphemia did that man, 
their neighbour, go up to let them know about that 
man, the Goth, and he was saying to them "That trea- 
cherous and guilty fellow who did by you all that trea- 

20 chery and great evil — to-day I have seen him and 
spoken with him. But contrive and see how it is fitting 
that this affair should be done. 1 ' 

o 9 

Then forthwith they gathered together all their neigh- 

° £ 

I to him] P < recompence] P wickedness 

5 trembled .... God] P his heart trembled not 

6 very] P < 7 he should] P pr, in it S of] F aod 

9 he, the Goth] P that wicked Goth 

10 their neighbour] F one of their neighbours 
II — 15 and he .... knowing him] P for so agitated was the guilty 

Goth, that he neither recognised him nor lingered for him and spoke 
with that man as he should have spoken, but overlooked him and spoke 
with him in agitation and did not linger for him 

16 houses (LP*)] P corT house 17 — 18 to let Goth] P to 

make that Goth known 1 9 that treachery and] P this 

23 Then forthwith they] P Now they forthwith 



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148 TRANSLATIONS. 

bours and their relations, and this they thought to do, 
that no one should reveal to him that her daughter 
Euphemia had come to this country. And all her kin 
went forth to seek that Goth with diligence; and when 
they found him they spake with him in friendliness, 5 
saying to him "In thy mother-in-law's house it were 
fitting that thou shouldest stay and rest, and thither it 
were right that thou go directly, because she is in much 
cogitation about thee and very desirous to see thee 
about her daughter." And having flattered him they 10 

CO 

brought him up to the house of Sophia his mother-in- 
-law. But she, that faithful woman Sophia, had shut up 
Euphemia her daughter in an inner chamber, that he 
might not see her at present, so that all his falsehood 
and his treachery that he had done by them might be is 
exposed. 

And when her neighbours and her relations had gathered 
together against the man in the midst of the house, 
Sophia his mother-in-law began to ask him, the liar, 
saying "What is thy tale, my son? And what is the 20 
tale of Euphemia my daughter? How did the journey 
treat you? Has a son been born to you? Is it a hoy or 

ID "K 

O 3 

2 to him] P 4- to tnat C ' oth her daughter] P thy daughter 

4 went forth .... diligence] P used great diligence to seek that Goth 
7 fitting] P + for thee 7 — 8 and rest .... go] P < 

10 about her daughter] P and ask thee about her having flattered 

him] P exhibiting much love for him they wheedled and flattered him (jzV) 
II — 12 Sophia .... -law] P Euphemia iz woman] P < 

13 Euphemia] P < that he] P so that the Goth 

14 so that] P pr. and 

15 them (/»«.)] P them (pissir.) 
1 7 P their neighbours and all her relations 
19 the liar] P < 20 snying] P + to him tale] lit, L votce' 

iny son] P < 
22 Is it] P < 



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EUrHEMIA. 149 

a girl? For I have been much in anxiety about you, 
because of the length of the journey!" 

Now the treacherous fellow opened his mouth in false-38 
hood and said to her: "In health we travelled, in peace 

5 the whole way; and we entered our city in tranquillity 
and joy, and we have no evil tale and we are in health. 
And thy daughter sends greeting to thee and her most 
dutiful reverence for thee, and no hurt at all hath she, 
and a son hath been born to us, a boy, - — and may 

to all those that thou lovest among your family be like 

CO 

her! And if we had not come forth hastily from our 
country, with me she was ready to come to see thee." 

And when Sophia heard these words of falsehood 39 
from that Goth, she trembled and rent her clothes, and 

rsi 

U cried out with a loud voice and said "What has he done 

to my daughter, the treacherous and lying fellow? These 
■^ "01 

are thy oaths! This is the covenant that thou has cove- 

nanted with me! The sureties thou gavest me, they shall 

bring thy life to an end, treacherous one!" And when40 

20 she said these things she brought out her daughter 

Euphemia and set her before htm, saying to him ''Thou 

knowest her, this girl here? Thou knowest how ye bound 

her? Those sureties thou gavest me, they brought her 

to me; the victorious Confessors, guardians of our country, 

o 

35 they brought her back from Sheol beneath, those holy 

o S 



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2 because .... journey] P for having let my daughter cross over. 
And how have you gone forth from thence? And for this I was grieving, 
because the journey was lengthy for you to go, that this might not happen 
to Tier, to my daughter, from the fatigue of the journey 

4 in peace] P pr. and 5 city] P country 

7 greeting] P pr. much 10 all those] P every one 

12 ready to come] F coming here 

15 cried out] P was agitated and wailed has he] P hast thou 



16 the ... . fellow] P < 25 back] P + to me 



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1 50 TRANSLATIONS. 

Martyrs, that thou didst stretch forth thy treacherous 
right hand and took her from, they rescued her from 
the tomb in which ye bound her living; Guria and 
Shmona and Habbib became for her swift steeds and 
delivered her from your hands!" 5 

41 Now he when he heard these things and saw the girl 
too — - the colour of his face was changed, and like a 
dead man so he became, and he was silenced and could 
not open his mouth and return any answer for shame 
and for the fear and terror that fell upon him. And all 1Q 
they that were there seized that Goth, having bound 
him in the house in the midst of the house and they 
were all keeping watch over him. And they made an 
affidavit of all the affair, as it was from the beginning 
even to the end, and how with these many oaths and 15 
with great promises and with a deed of dowry he had 
taken the girl, swearing that he had not taken a wife 
in his own country, and how he had gone forth and 
given them for sureties the Confessors, the victorious 
Martyrs, and how he stretched out his right hand and go 
took her from the Coffin where lie the bones of the 
holy Martyrs Shmona and Guria and Habbib; and how 
they appeared to her when bound in the tomb shining 
with a great light and glory, and abolished the stinking 



3 

2 right] P < 4 swift steeds] j« p. 62 



7 — 8 like , , , . became] P became tike a dead man 

9 shame] F pr. his 

10 the fear] P his fear terror] P pr, the 

11 P the man, that Goth having] P aod 

12 — 13 and they were] P < 14 affidavit] ste p. 72 

15 these] P < 20 right] P < 

22 Martyrs] P < 23 when bound in] P in the midst of 

24 great] P splendid light and glory] P and glorious light 

abolished] P pr. it 



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EUPHEMIA. I 5 I 

smell of the corpse, for that there blew from them a 
sweet smell of spices; and how they brought her in one 
night the many stages. 

And they went down and made it known to the chaste 
5 and holy priest Eulogius the Bishop, and they gave him 
the affidavit. Now the priest, when what was written 
was read before him, was astonished, yea, he marvelled 
at the audacity of that man, and great zeal was stirred a% 
in him, yea, he undertook the care of this business, 
10 And he gathered together his clergy with the presbyter, 
the Faramonarius of the Shrine of the holy Martyrs, 
the Confessors, and unto His Excellency the Strat elates 

i-H 

he went and made it known, that which was written 

d 

in the affidavit having been read before him, just as the 

rsi 

15 whole business was. Now the StrateJates and every one 
that was there when they heard were amazed thereat, 
at this great miracle, which God had wrought by the 
suretiship of the Confessors, the sureties and Victorious 
ones, and they marvelled how that Goth had been so 

20 bold and had not trembled. 

Then the Stratelates in a rage gave orders and they4>i 
brought that Goth from where he was bound by them, 
and also the girl herself, Euphemia, and when they came 
they made them stand before the Stratelates and before 

i for that] P and 2 sweet] P < 



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4 went down] P came 5 Eulogius] P pr. Mar: set p. 142*' 

6 the priest] P he, the priest of God J yea, he] P and 

9 yea] P and Io his] P pr. all 1 3 he] P and they (sic) 

13 — 14 that .... having been] P and when .... was {sic) 

16 were] P was {sic) 

1 8 the Confessors .... ones] P the Martyrs, the Confessors 

21 rage] P pr. great 22 where] P the place that 

23 herself] P < 

24 they made] P he made the Stratelates] P pr. His Excellency 



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the glorious and holy priest Eulogius the Bishop; and 
all the city was gathered together. And they gave orders 
that what was written in the affidavit should be read, 
that the Goth and the girl might hear. And as soon as 
it was all read, they asked the Goth and said to him 5 
"Is it true what thou hast heard written in this affidavit?" 
Now the Goth replied "Yea, my Lord, it is true, and 
there is no word of falsehood in it, not one!" 

44 Then the Stratelates said to him "Oh audacious against 
the truth! how was it thou didst not tremble at the 10 

o 

just judgement of God? And didst also be contemp- 
ts 

tuous of the pure laws of the Romans, and didst despise 

i-H 

the oaths, yea make nothing of the covenant of the 

d 

suretiship of the holy Martyrs, and give to subjection 

rsi 

and bridle a free person with the yoke of slavery?" 15 

QJ 

And forthwith the Stratelates commanded that he should 
receive sentence of execution by the sword and be burned 
with fire, for that he had dared to accomplish all this evil. 

45 Now the true and merciful priest Eulogius the Bishop 
had entreated that it should not be for him so, but 20 
that with mercy he should use him. And when Eulogius 
had made much entreaty, the Stratelates replied to him : 

"I tremble to have mercy on this man, lest on me the 

9 z 

1 glorious and holy priest] P priest of God Eulogius] P pr. Mai 

2 they] P he 



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7 Goth] P pr. wicked replied] P made reply and said 

9 — 10 Oh .... truth!] P In truth tremble] F + audaciou! one 

11 just] P < 13 yea] P and 

15 a free person] lit. freedom yoke] P pr, cruel slavery] P 
barbarian dominion 

16 commanded] P pr. fiercely 17 of . . . . sword] P < 
iS all this] F this great 19 Eulogius the Bishop] P < 

20 had entreated] P entreated him 21 Eulogius] P pr. the holy 

22 replied] P made reply 



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EUPHEMIA. 153 

Confessors should wreak vengeance, as one who con- 
temns and as one who despises their suretiship, and that 
others again should dare and should accomplish some- 
thing like this fellow, trusting for mercy." Then they4-6 
5 led him and took him out of the city, and the sentence 
of the sword he received, and because of much entreaty 
he was exempted from the burning. And every one 
glorified and praised God, who doth the pleasure of them 
that fear Him and heareth and receiveth the supplication 
10 of those that frequent His Gate and take refuge with 

CO 

His Saints. To whom be glory and thanksgiving and 
exaltation, and to the Father who sent Him for our 

i-H 

salvation, and to the Living and Holy Spirit, for ever 
and ever, Amen. 

rsi 
o 
rsi 

Here endeth the story about S. Euphemia and 
about Sophia the mother of her, who were 
from Edessa the Blessed City. 

T3 ^ 

1 Confessors] P Holy ones contemns] P looks askance at 

2 as one who] P < 

3 — 4 something .... fellow] P again something like this 

7 the burning] P pr, the fire and 

8 doth the pleasure of] P doth good pleasure for: see Note on % 1 
11 — 12 and exaltation] P < 13 Living and] P < 

13 — 14 for ever .... Amen,] P now {i.e. now, and for ever, £i£.) 

Subscription in P: Here endeth the story of 
the Miracle that the holy Confessors performed 



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on Euphemia who was betrothed to the Goth 
in the City of Edessa. Now it was copied 
from an old book that was written in the 
Imperial City of Constantinople by John the 
Recluse Monk. 



20 



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APPENDIX I. 

THE MERCHANT OF HARRAN. 

The Story of the Merchant of Harra.ii and the Wife 
of Patricius is included here because it immediately fol- 

00 

lows the story of Euphemia in the Nitrian MS (L). I 

o 

imagine that there can be little doubt that it is alto- 
gether Syriac in origin and transmission. It should be 
noted that the Harranians are regarded as pagans: this 

o 

agrees with the witness of u Silvia"-Etheria, whatever the 
true date of that lady may be, though it was a fact not 
likely to be known except by those who had personal 
knowledge of the district. The tale is found also in B. M. 
Add. 1 2174, a vast collection of pious tales, written in 
1 1 97 AD, but the variations do not appear to be worth 
recording. The name "Royal City" for Constantinople 
is a point of contact with the colophon of P, the Paris 

ID "K 

MS of Euphemia, but the title is found elsewhere. The 

9 z 

Patricius of this story can hardly have anything to do 
with Marcianus the Patricius, mentioned in the colophon 
to the translation of Habbib called (!> 2 (see v. Dobschutz. 

1/1 t-i + \ 1 

p. xxx). 

After the emphasis laid in Euphemia upon the magic 
Power that abides with the genuine remains of the Con- 
fessors it is quite a relief to find that a miracle can be 
worked just as well with a bit of common stone, if only 
the psychological conditions for a lively faith are satisfied! 

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APPENDIX. I 5 5 

Story about a Merchant -who was in the Royal 
City of Constantinople '). 

A story worthy of commendation we wish to relate 
before you, our faithful brethren, sons of Holy Church ; 
for even if to ignorant and irrational men it may seem 
too insignificant for us to hear it, yet to the believing 
and discreet it is a matter of astonishment and marvel 
in its operation. 

Folk used to tell then and say that there was a cer- 
tain man from Paddana, a village in the district of Harran 
— now these very persons received this story from the 
merchant himself — and this same merchant continually 
used to go up and down to the royal city Constanti- 
nople in the course of a merchant's business, for coun- 
tries are wont to be nourished by neighbouring coun- 
tries in respect of the things not found in them by 
folk who go and come to them. 

Now there was a certain Patricius in this same City, 
and he had dealings with that merchant by way of 
business and matters of buying and selling. And the 

u 

wife of that Patricius was barren. Now one day this 
same woman asked that merchant and said to him 
"Whence art thou?'' And he said to her: "From Pad- 
dana, a village in the district of Harran." The woman 
says to him: "Is it true that you have a monastery 
called Mar Abraham's? He says to her: "It is true." 
She says to him "Is the stone still there that Jacob 
rolled from the mouth of the Well, when he went down 
to Padan-Aram, and gave drink to the flock of Laban 



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Igd APPENDIX. 

his mother's brother?" He says to her: "It is still there." 
The woman says to him: "As I hear, to many barren 
women God has given sons from that stone through 
their faith." The man says to her "The stone indeed 
is still there, but whether any property be given to it 
or no, I know not!" She says to him: "If so be that 
thou bring me a little of it, I will do many good things 
for thee." 

And the merchant returned to his country, and at the 
turn of the year he got ready a load and went up, and 
from whatever cause it may have been he forgot and 
did not bring up for that woman that which she had 
told him to bring. And when she saw him she said to 
him: "Hast thou brought me that which I asked of thee?" 
But he — forthwith confusion fell upon his mind, for 
that he had forgotten and had not brought it for her, 
but openly he said to her: "It has been brought by me," 
She says to him: "On Sunday, at early dawn, bring it 
for me and come." But that merchant went forth outside 
the city, and he found a stone and broke off a little 
from it, and wrapped it in a clear piece of silk and put 
it inside a bag. 

Now in the evening of the vigil of Sunday ') the woman 
went to the bath and washed herself, and she cleansed 
together with herself her thoughts also; and the Martyr- 
shrine that was within her house she adorned with lights 
and fine coverings, and she brought priests and kept 
up a service all night, she also keeping vigil with them 
and praying that God would give her her request, after 
the manner of Hanna when she was standing in prayer 



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before Eli the Priest, Then at dawn on the Sunday she 
put off the garments she was clothed in and adorned 
herself in all the ornaments of her bridal dress, and 
standing within the door of the Martyr-shrine she spread 
out her skirts and received from the merchant that which 
he brought herj and she caressed it and embraced it 
and kissed it and pressed it against her eyes. 

The faith that performs mighty deeds like God did 
not grudge her the reward of her faith, as neither did 
it to Hanna, and the Lord opened her womb and she 
conceived, and when she saw she was with child she 
revealed all the business to her husband. And when he 
learned it all he rejoiced and glorified God, and he 
called the merchant and said to him: "Now that God 
has done all this through thy hands, that which is to 
be born to us shall be thy son, and thou shalt receive 
him from baptism" '). 

Now that merchant when he heard, his heart was 
stupefied and trembling took possession of his limbs, 
and he believed in his heart and said: "It is established 

1/1 

for me that great is the God of the Christians, and there 

u 

is no faith except theirs! For lo, this business — if any 

O 

one else had told it me, perchance I should have doubted 
it was not true- but lo, through my hands it came to 
pass and was performed ! For if a bit of common stone 
through the woman's faith can give her a son, how 
much more if I had brought her some of that very stone 
which she asked for!" And the merchant returned to 
his own land; and some hindrance befel him, and he 
did not go up at the turn of the year. 



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158 APPENDIX. 

But as for that woman, she gave birth to a boy, and 
they were calling him by the name of the merchant, 
yet they did not baptize him, saying: "Till he comes, 
or we are decided about his coming." 

Now after that year the merchant went up according 
to his custom, and he lodged where he was wont to 
lodge. But Patricius, when he was aware of it, sent his 
servants and they took him and his load up to their 
master's house, saying to him: "In thy son's house it 
is proper for thee to lodge." And he brought out the 

o 

baby and laid him in his lap, saying: "This is thy son! 
But on Sunday, should our Lord will, he is to receive 
the seal of baptism and thou art to receive him." 
Now the merchant, though he had believed, yet he 

rsi 

had not yet been perfected with the Christian's Mystery, 
And so the merchant sat down and began relating to 
Patricius the whole business, as it was completed, from 
the beginning even to the end, how the woman had 
asked him "Whence art thou?", and when she asked 

hinl about the stone, and that she had begged of him 

t 1/1 

to bring her some, and how when he forgot out of 

shame he had brought her a bit of some common stone 
from outside the city. 

But when Patricius heard these things he marvelled 
exceedingly and glorified God, and forthwith he got up 
and went to the Palace, and cast himself down before 
the Emperor, and told him all this story, and the Em- 
peror also when he heard was astonished and gave 
thanks and glorified God, who doth not disregard those 
that ask Him in faith. And they sent for the Patriarch 
also and commanded that on the Sunday there should 
be a new Feast, and the Emperor should go down with 



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APPENDIX. 1 59 

the Patriarch to the Church, and that merchant should 
be baptized and Patricius should receive him, and on 
the next Sunday that baby should be baptized and the 
merchant should receive him. And thus according to 
the Providence of God they were both of them perfected. 
Now these things, O brethren of ours, we have 
related before you that no man may doubt about the 
true faith of Christians, as if it were a weak thing in 
its nature, and not able to perform miracles for us as 

00 

for them of old time. For it is not a weak thing in its 

CO 

own nature — far from it! — but in us it is weakened, 

o 

and that through our slackness and our doubt and our 
transgression into sins. For if in any way our faith is 
from God, and He, God, hath said "I am He, and I 
change not", why then Faith itself also is the same 
and doth not change. 

"a en 

Now may our Lord give to us, that through these 
things that in faith have been confirmed and perfected 
and completed — that we also in the same faith may 
be confirmed, and in hope and in love may be perfected, 
in the grace of our Lord Jesus the Messiah, to Whom 
and to His Father and to His Living and Holy Spirit 
[be glory], now and at all times and for ever and ever. 
Amen. 

Here endeth the Story about the Merchant and 
about the Wife of Patricius. 



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APPENDIX II. 

ON THE DATE OF THE CAPTURE OF JERUSALEM 
BY SALADIN. 

In the course of tracing out the later history of Edessa 
I chanced to come across the following curiosities of 
dating, which may have some interest to the readers 
of this book, as a parallel to the inaccuracies that meet 
us in the story of Shmorta and Guria. 

There can be little doubt that, as a matter of fact, 
Jerusalem capitulated to Saladin on Friday, the 2nd of 
October; 1 187 A. D. The year 583 of the Hegira is given 
in the extant inscription of Saladin , commemorating 
the victory. Ibn el-Athir, who was a contemporary, 
further tells us that the Cross which the Crusaders had 
erected on the top of the Dome of the Rock was pulled 
down the very day that the city was taken, which was 
a Friday, and that on the following Friday, which was 
the 4th of Sha c ban, the building was cleansed with rose- 
water, and a service held at which Saladin was present ] J. 
Now by a reference to Mas Latrie's Tables we find that 
4 Sha'ban 583 A. H. = 9 Oct. 1 187 A. D., and that the 
day was a Friday. 

The Continuator of William ot Tyre gives the fatal 
date very fully. He says; "Le jor que la cite de Jeru- 
salem fu rendue estoit vendredi, et fu feste Saint Legier, 
qui est le second jor d*octembre en l'an de l'incarnation 



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APPENDIX. l6l 

Nostre Seigneur mil cent et qcatre vingt et huit." That 
is to say, the day of the week and month are correctly 
given, but the year is wrong. No doubt it had once 
been written, wholly or partly, in figures and there was 
one stroke too many. 

Bar Hebraeus also tells the story of the loss of Jeru- 
salem. He gives the date as the 27^ of the seventh Arab 
month, 583 A. H., which agrees with Ibn el-Athir, but 
he also says it was Friday, the 12'h October, 1498 A. Gr. 
(= 1 1 86 AD.) 1 ). That is to say, he gets the month and 
the day of the week right, but the day of the month 
is wrong and the year is wrong. The conjecture is ob- 
vious that in his authority the date of the month was 
written in figures ^ (12 th ), instead of ^ (2 tA ). The error 
in the description of the sack of Edessa was also ten 
■ days, but it was the other way round. 

With regard to the year it appears that Bar Hebraeus's 
error comes rather from mistaken erudition than from a 
scribe's blunder, for he tells us that Jerusalem was taken 
28 days after the conjunction of the Six Planets; and this 
conjunction he asserts to have taken place on the 29th 
of the 6 th Arab month, 583 A. H. This really is 4 Sept. 
1187, but Bar Hebraeus says it was 14 Sept. 1497 A, Gr. 
(= 1186 A.D., the Seleucid year beginning on Oct. I 3 )). 
Sir Robert Ball has kindly ascertained for me that the 
Conjunction took place on 15 Sept. 1 186: Bar Hebraeus 
has therefore gone wrong by exactly one Mohammedan 
year! In all these cases, however, the day of the week 
has been correctly handed down. 



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1) B. H. Chron., p. 405. 2) B. H. Chr., p. 396. 



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NOTES 

[to the English Text in "TRANSLATIONS"]. 



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NOTES TO SHMONA AND GURIA. 

§ r (Page 90, I. 6) ~Konna, Bishop of Edessa. The 
name r^Li&n, always in the genitive, is given as Kovviz, 
Kovovor, Kevx, Rsyvirav, and in Latin Conae. The form 
KiyvxTctr (i.e. Cognatus) is itself a recognition of the 
doubled consonant, so I have adopted the spelling U°nna. 
The one thing certainly known about ]£onna is that he 
remained Bishop of Edessa after the Persecution and 
that it was he who began to build the 'Great Church' 
of Edessa in 312/13 A.D. (Chron. Edess. xii), i.e. in the 
year of the Edict of Milan. It would be interesting to 
learn how the Bishop escaped the persecution in which 
Shmona, Guria and Habbib fell victims. 

Nothing more is known about Konna. So far as I 
have been able to discover, the only further independent 
mention of him is in B.M. Add. 14504, a 9th century 
Tropologion. In a Kalendar of Festivals and Saints' Days 
prefixed to this we read 

cn=».i r<Srt&* . oajcv.^jOtK'.t ^Ai.'ai. r£x-*.ia:i {Sep. 2) 
. r tf a As o i^trt'.i r<iW*cn:i t<$i.tc\.*jCv . JbqJ^f^* 

, r-c'.itnae Kbnl*&urcto .v^JLO rciiao;! (Sep. 3) 

Sep. 2. Of S. Simeon Stylites, the day on which he 
was perfected; and the renewal (consecration) of the Church 
of King Abgar. 

Sep. 3. Of Konna and Sha c ad and Aitilaha , the 



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164 NOTES TO SUM ON A AND GORIA. 

Sha c ad and Aitilaha were Jionna's immediate succes- 
sors. "The holy Confessors who were crowned in Edessa" 
(no names) are duly commemorated together on Nov. 
15 in this MS, which is Jacobite in origin and came to 
be used in the Syrian church at Fostat (Cairo). In 
Rahmani's Chronicle {foL g^v) Sha c ad is called ho^u. 
and Konna is called rc'icia, as in the margin of J in 
this passage. 

§ 3 (Page 91, 1. 7) Sargai-T^etma. I have entirely failed 
to find any further notice of this place or of 'Gannada'. 
The spelling in the Greek MSS varies between *Z&pfe&i* 
xfTfAXj, Xxpyifzirvxir, ^.xpyviKviTfAXv, while the Armenian 
has Margegetma. It seems evident therefore that J, 
which only has ^ito, has lost two syllables. But Sargai- 
Ketma (? "Saddles of Ashes") is a very odd name. It is 
remarkable that none of the "Confessors of Edessa" 
come from Edessa itself. 

That «ix-sasa (lit. 'hallowed') means a celibate ascetic 
is recognised by Q5 1 which renders it i s^xpa-r^s-. 

It would be tempting to translate r^iiir^i r^li.i by 

"the local judge", but the same title is clearly used in 

Habbib 7 of the judge in Edessa, 

s 
3 

§ 5 (Page 92, 1. loff.) The List of Martyrs. This List 
is almost certainly dependent upon the Syriac translation 
of Eusebius's Martyrs of Palestine, for "Epiphanius" 
corresponds to the aatfto&nf of Cureton's text, which 
itself is a miswriting of l A,wtyui»S<r (Eus. MP IV). Further, 
coa.\a£i here and in Cureton appears to be meant for 
Yl^KsviF (MP XIII). Before Hesychius of Nicomedia (5 1 



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NOTES TO SHMONA AND GURIA. 1 65 

inserts Agapetus of Thessalonica and after Hesychius 
adds Philip of Hadrianople. 

If we may regard Agapetus as a mistake for Agape 
(April 2) all the names not taken from Eusebius occur 
in the ancient Syriac Martyrology, except Peter of 
Melitene. But it is difficult to see upon what principle 
they were taken. Hermas (or Hermes) of Nisi bis, com- 
memorated in the Syrian Martyrology on the Friday 
after Easter, is not mentioned by S. Ephraim in his 

Carmina Nisibena. 

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in 
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S 6 (Page 92, 1. 18) Mysianus. (5 2 has Mutixvocf, (S 1 has 
Movcrdivtar in § 16 f., but 'AyT&vio<T here. The Armenian 
has Musisianus. In § i6f. our Syriac codex appears to 
have has Lysianus in its exemplar. Mysianus appears to 

be a different person from Ausonius (or Lysanias) before 

■a en 

whom Habbib was tried : see further on Habbib % 3 (p. 175). 

n ^ 

§ 1 5 (Page 94, 1, 7) The Caravanserai. The topogra- 
phical addition in (fr is quite unlike other additions to 
the Acts in either Greek version. © 2 especially exhibits 
elsewhere no interest in such matters : see 5. & G. 56, 
57; H. 35. This addition is therefore unlikely to be a 
mere interpolation : more probably it preserves the ori- 
ginal text, which has been here curtailed in J and in 

§ 27 (Page 97, J. 28) Leonthis. In the Syriac the name 
of the jailor occurs here only. In (!)' and the Armenian 
it occurs also in § 15: (5 2 does not give a name in either 
place. I venture to think a mention of the jailor more 
likely to have been inserted in § 15 than omitted, i.e. 



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^6 NOTES TO SIIMONA AND GURIA. 

that the Syriac is in this respect original, and that the 
name in § 15 is an interpolation from § 27. 

As to the form of the name,, the Syriac has ojai^iorc^, 
in which the first letter is the preposition corresponding 
to the dative case. The Greek MSS of CO 1 vary between 
irnvrsij xvouiTty and kmra, the Armenian has Evet&s and 
the' Latin Abitus. If the first letter of the Syriac be 
omitted we get what corresponds exactly to xvTvtcj). 
'Leontius' is a suitable name for a Roman subordinate 
official in the 4 th century, more appropriate, I think, 
than 'A vitus*. I therefore assume that the Greek has 
arisen from a misreading of the original Syriac, here 
correctly preserved by J. 

S 35 (P a £ e 99> !■ 20 ) Tki 'BucMe. The word corres- 
ponding to 'buckle' in J, both here and in § 41 is 

rdl*aj», i.e. 'sapphire', which is obviously wrong. Some 
machine which will produce the required torture is 
required. For the 'fetter' (Ipabba) we find y.xfic<? in (S 1 
and £j£vif in & l . This instrument appears to have been 
something of the nature of a heavy weight. Shmona was 
hung up by one leg, and a counterpoise was needed, 
corresponding more or less to the weight of his body. 

The clause about the iron Ato is omitted in ('>'. In 
© a it is called a f<pqi?dptttv, i.e. a wedge. But it seems 
to me that a wedge would take off the strain on the 
martyr's knee and diminish rather than increase his pains. 
The Syriac MS has a marginal gloss k\tgJ&j-, i.e. a 
pike or rake, the idea being that Shmona was slung 
from a horizontal pike by his bent knee. The only dif- 
ficulty of this is to connect the letters of rtdiStflP with 



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NOTES TO SHMONA AND GURIA. 167 

any word for pole or pike. I have therefore followed 
the indication given by the Armenian, which has "an 
iron ring". The Syriac word rdV^cvn f a buckle' is not 
unlike rdi&tt, and it gives the sense required. In either 
case we are to think of Shmona as hanging from some 
sort of horizontal support, whether a bar or a buckle, 
passing under his right knee, the 'fetter' (fyabba) being 
heavy enough to keep his right foot down and his 
knee bent. 

S 41 (Page 10 r, 1. iyf(.) The Trial at Night. The hour 
indicated corresponds very closely with that of the Trial 
of Jesus in the Gospels (Mk XIV 72). As these midnight 
sessions find no place in our modern practice they have 
sometimes been actually held to cast doubt upon the 
whole story. It is therefore worth while to notice that 
5. Irenaeus of Sirmium, a Diocletian martyr, had a 
similar trial: "Quodam autem tempore media nocte, 
residente pro tribunali praeside Probo, introductus est 
iterum beatissimus martyr Irenaeus" (O. v. Gebhardt, 
Acta martyrum selecta, p. 163). Neither with this Irenaeus 
nor with Shmona and Gurla is there any attempt to 
suggest a parallel between their trials and the trial of 
our Lord. Thev must therefore be held to shew that 
midnight trials did take place under Roman officials, at 
least in certain Provinces. 

The method of stating the date is worth notice. The 
Kalendar used in Syriac documents is the Julian, except 
that the months are called by the Aramaic names and 
are reckoned from the beginning like ours, and not by 
Ides and Kalends. I have therefore translated Ab by 
August and Tishrm ^hray by October, as they exactly 



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I6S NOTES TO SHMONA AND GURIA. 

correspond to these months '). Along with the Roman 
Kalendar the Syrians adopted the Roman division of 
the civil day, which is also ours. As they were unpro- 
vided with docks and watches, that which happened in 
the &®pw, in the middle of the night, was reckoned to 
the preceding day in the case of those who stayed out 
late, but to the following day in the case of those who 
rose early. Joshua Stylites § 27 says: "On May 17, 496 
A.D., the citizens of Edessa kept heathen festival, .... 
and on this day, which is Friday the dawning of Saturday, 
they had a gala night in honour of Trimerius the dancer". 
This obviously is a use of terms analogous to our own, 
and different from e,g. the Jewish use, according to 
which the whole of the night festival would have been 
reckoned as belonging to Saturday. In the present case 
the Governor has not been up all night, but has risen 
early, therefore this trial (which is represented as taking 
place about 5 a.m.) is described as belonging to the 
following day. 

The word for "dawning", though by derivation it 
implies the light of visible dawn, is used both here and 
in the Gospels and in Josh. Styl. §§ 27, 47, in the con- 
ventional sense of " preceding the following day". 

The word Balq which appears in the Armenian here 
is a corruption of Balaniq, i.e. "Baths". 

"Flambeaux" (1. 21) Is only a guess. So far as I can 
ascertain, the word p^'i&A*», here presented by J, is 
otherwise entirely unknown, I imagine it is merely a 
miswriting of rcHAsai, i.e, "torches", x&^ft&herr. 



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month, but the 30th day was reckoned twice over, as in the Anglican 
division of the Psalter. 



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NOTES TO SHMONA AND GURIA. 1 69 

S 6j (Page ro8, 1. i) The Coffin. The ultimate fate 
of this Coffin is told by Bar Hebraeus (see Introd. p. 68). 
The Syriac word T^*r»lnflpAiV^ glusfcma is, of course, 
derived from yXaifroKsptsv, but it is quite a naturalised 
word (as is shewn by the pronunciation) and is used for 
Coffin in purely Syriac original writings, e.g. Ephraim 
Overbcck I2 2a ; Josh. Styl. § 80. I have ascertained from 
the "Nestorian Masora" (B.M. Add. 121 38) that the 
pronunciation really is gluslpma, i.e. two syllables only, 
with u (not 0) in the first syllable. 

§ 68 (Page 108, 3. 14) Arak- Edessa. The city com- 
monly called Edessa by modern scholars had various 
names. By the inhabitants, as long as Syriac continued 
to be the vernacular, it was generally called ^coior^ 

Urhai. From this name is derived the Arabic lJul and 
the modern Urfa, The name Edessa is derived from 
"ESfiTtrs! in Macedonia, and was no doubt the name given 
to the town on its re-foundation by Seleucus Nicator: 
this is the name by which it was known to the Greek- 
speaking world. Besides these, the name vslr^ (vocalised 
Arak) also occurs. 

In Genesis x 10 Nimrod's dominion is said to have been 

ips& p«a n&y\ "dni ^-iif tea 

that is to say, "Babylon and Warka and Akkad and 
Calneh in the Sumerian land'*. Whatever difficulties 
there may be in the exact identification of these places, 
there can be no doubt that they are all in Babylonia, 
not so very far from Baghdad. In the Peshitta the second 
and third names appear as v\ir< (Arak), and i_ap^ 
(Akar), and about these names Ephraim in his Com- 

22 



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mentary on Genesis (E S I 58) says "Arak, which is 

Edessa" (<<b3«< m*iv»f^s vv'ir*') and "Akar, which is 

Nisibis". Almost all the passage where Edessa is called 
Arak in Syriac writings appear to be mere echoes of 
Ephraim's identification. 

But whatever view we taken about the historicity of 
Shtnona and Guria the occurrence here of Arak is 
pointless, except it be a genuine reflexion of actual 
usage. It is therefore good evidence that this really was 
a name for Edessa, which seems to have dropped out 
in later times. 

The name Vrhai does not look like a native Syriac 
word, such as Nislbin or Telia or Dara. If Arak was 
the really ancient native name for Edessa, then Urhai 
may after all be a Semitic corruption of [K«AAi]j»&i , by 
which name Edessa was also known — a fonte nominata, 
as Pliny says (UN v 24). 

I have not been able to detect any difference of topo- 
graphical meaning between v\irC, rtfooar^ and >eniGn^. 



wlr 



S 68 (Page 108, 1. I4ff.) The List of Bishops, The whole 
of § 68 is left out in 05 '» The Armenian has only "And 
the crowning .... took place in the days of Kona, 
Bishop of the same city, to the praise of Christ our 
God, to whom &c." But (B a has "Now the Holy ones 
were martyred in the days of Konna, Bishop of Edessa, 
and of Gallius [leg. Gains] Bishop of Rome, and of 
Hymenaeus Bishop of Jerusalem, and of Thynas [leg. 
Theonas] Bishop of Alexandria, and of Traianus [leg. 
Tyrannus] Bishop of Antioch, by whose prayers may 
Christ our true God keep the Church unmoved and 



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undisturbed and grant victory to our orthodox Em- 
perors", &c. The agreement of C5 2 with our Syriac 
Codex J makes it certain that the List really belongs 
to the document. As it stands in (!5 2 it is a mere list of 
synchronisms to date the martyrdom of Shmona and 
Guria, and as such it is contradictory both with the rest 
of the story and with itself (see pp. J and 31). But the 
Syriac text, as I have already pointed out on p. 31, 
does not give us a regular list of synchronisms. The 
story of SS. Shmona and Guria in J comes to an end 
with their deposition in the Coffin and with the sound 
of the "psalms and litanies" which the pious folk of 
Edessa chanted over them. All the rest of § 6j and 
§§ 68 — 70 is the author's peroration. The List of Bishops 
refers to the 'Diocletian' Persecution generally, not to 
the Edessene martyrs alone, just as the list of countries 
which follows in J refers to the Persecution generally 
and not to Edessa only. 



§ 70 (Page 109, 11. 1 9, 20) Monasteries and Monks. I 
have ventured to omit one or two clauses here as anachro- 
nisms. The words in J here omitted are exactly analo- 

o 

gous to the mention of 'nuns' in § 1 (Page 90, 1. 11), which 
is shewn to be an interpolation by its absence from all 
the versions. Such additions we may expect to find in a 
late copy like J ; their presence does not throw any 
discredit upon the whole peroration, any more than does 
the occurrence of Habbib's name (see p. no, 1. 6 note). 



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NOTES TO HABBIB. 

§ 2 (Page u 3 ; 1. 3) And he was commanding them is 
as odd in Syriac as it is in English. Possibly some 
words have dropped out of the Syriac text. in°CTA 
^jocni rCfaco is translated by Cureton "and he gave 
them instructions", but the Pael of .Tni is not thus 
used absolutely. I take this opportunity of pointing out 
a double error in Brockelmann's Lexicon, p. 282^, art. 
•\a.2k . He gives, at the end, "Af. roboravit Ez 1 S S3 ". 
The passage meant is evidently Exodus iS 21 , where 
vy Jtafttti does occur and also is pointed maphked lak 

by Lee, following Jacobite tradition. But the Urmi edi- 
tion has mpakked lak (i.e. the ordinary Pael conjugation), 
and 'roboravit' simply comes from the LXX %wrt&%&TH, 
The Hebrew is ~^1 of which the Peshitta is a literal 
translation. So far as I know, the Afel of .%na is not 
alleged to occur elsewhere. 

3 

§ 2 (Page 113, 1.6) That state (rrt=a*ii) in which they 
stood. r£m*a is derived from the verb for 'to stand', 
so that there is about as much paronomasia in the Syriac 
phrase as there is in the English, not more. The whole 
phrase reappears in Aphraatcs 171,, in the same sense, 
and in S. & G. % 40 Shmona refuses to "turn away" 
from his Christian status. 



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NOTES TO HABBIB. 1/3 

The early Syriac ecclesiastical use of iQawa has been 
treated by Prof. A. J. Wensinck in ZDMG LXIV (19 10), 
pp. 561 ff., 81 2, with reference to the nd-sun *!=, "sons 
of the covenant". That these persons were ascetics who 
abstained at least from marriage, and to a great extent 
from worldly affairs, is evident; the main question is to 
what extent and during what periods they were conter- 
minous with the body of baptized Christians. Dr. Wensinck 
brings forward a number of passages from Aphraates 
which tend to shew that Kyama means "status" or "rank" 
rather than "a covenant", though it very often corres- 
ponds to the Hebrew FF"D. But when kyama means 
"status", I think it is always what Aphraates I 588 &c. 
calls "the holy status", i,e, the xzv&v or rule of life 
practised by the saints of God. This is certainly the 
case in Aphr. II 105, 107, and also in the two passages 
of Ephraim where the word is used independently of 
the Bible. In ES I 47* we are told how the daughters 
of Cain caused the sons of Seth to forget the status 
that was set up for them by their fathers, and in E S 
II 454 A Ephraim asks "How have the pure become 
numerous in the world, they whose kyama has despised 
Fate and Nature ?" Whether we call this a status or 
a covenant it is the way of life indicated by Job XXXI 
1. The "Sons of the kyama" are those whose way of 
life is that of the saints of God, the approved details 
varying from age to age. I venture to think it always 
included a promise (as in Philoxenus 6og ), and there- 
fore I have continued to render rdsoio >isa in S. & G. 
§ 70 and elsewhere by "Sons of the Covenant". 



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§ 3 (Page 113, 1. 7) The city Informers (K&uurtM* K'i.-it). 



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174 NOTES TO HABBIB. 

These personages are mentioned in Habbib S% 3, 13a, 
390, in Skarbei, p. 69, in Barsamya, pp. 63, 64, 71. 
They do not appear at all in Shmona and Guria. In 
Skarbei and Barsamya the term is treated as known 
and technical. In Habbib, on the other hand, it is ex- 
plained each time that their duty was to collect infor- 
mation and bring it to the Governor. The Greek versions 
consistently avoid mentioning these persons, the nearest 
rendering being rwm y.a.v.olp'yoi in <$►' here. Further we 
may notice that all the other office-bearers that occur in 
these Acts have Graeco-Latin names, such as Commen- 
taresius and Exceptores. 
I infer from these facts : 

(1) that the name is intended to be descriptive, not 
technical, Skarrlra means one who is entrusted with 
the due performance of something (see esp. Mar Petition 
32 l4 ]: in this case the nature of the duty is expressly 
stated, vis, that of confidential Reports to the Roman 
executive in Edessa. 

(2) that the Syriac text is here original, and that the 
Greek versions which leave out all mention of these 
Sharrlre did so either because this detail of heathen 
administration seemed uninteresting, or because a word 
which etymologically means "true men" was misunder- 
stood. 

(3) that Sharbel and Barsamya have misunderstood 
the use of the term in Habbib, and have turned the 
Governor's confidential spies or reporters into public 
officials, who arrest Christians [ASD p. 64.J or express 
opinions of their own (p. 6o ]5 ). The public officials of 
Edessa are not Sharrire but Strategi. 

In the account of the flood of 201 A.D. at Edessa, 



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NOTES TO HABBIB. I75 

given in the Edessene Chronicle, Skarrire are mentioned 
not as executive officials, but as the persons who place 
a Report on the flood in the public archives. 

If, as elsewhere suggested, the account of the trial of 
Habbib was written up from such official documents as 
Theophilus could collect, it is quite conceivable to me 
that such documents might very well include some 
reports from detectives as to the sentiments and temper 
of the predominantly Christian population of Edessa 
during the official Persecution. 

§ 3 (Page 1 1 3, 1. 9) Ausonius or Lysanias. The name of 
the Roman Governor who tried Habbib is mentioned in 

§ 3 and in § 5. Cureton's text has ocuiQoali in both 
places, the name occurring each time after the preposi- 
tion \ , ('>' has liri Avv&viov in § 3 and in § 5 leaves 
out the personal name. C1 2 has wctpx Auo-oWw in § 3 and 
Avtrwvicp in § 5. It had seemed obvious that the reading 
of (0* was a mere corruption, and I found out too late 

that in § 5 the first hand of Codex N had QOiicoareiA , 
now corrected to <hhjoocua . Further, the best MS of 
©' (v. Dobschutz's A) reads hrtTpxiiwhu, which goes 
some way towards 1st) xuauvicu. 

It seems to me now evident that the convergence of 
the three lines of transmission suggests that the original 
text called the Governor Ausonius. 

Prof. v. Dobschiitz (p. xlvii, note 2) points out as a 
circumstance unfavourable to the historicity of Habbib 
that Lysanias is also the persecuting Governor in Sharbel 
and Barsamya, and that Lysias is almost the regular 
name given to the persecuting Governor in the Acts of 



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176 NOTES TO HABBTB. 

Diocletian martyrs, giving no less than eight examples. 
This explains very well why Lysanias should appear in 
various later texts of Habbib, while the fact that the 
genuine text appears to give Ausonius, and not Lysanias 
after all, suggests that this less common name may be 
historically correct. 

The Judge who tried Habbib is much rougher and 
sharper than the one who tried Shmona and Guria: it 
is no wonder that they have different names, for they 
are obviously different persons. Yet in .S. & G. our Syriac 
MS calls Mysianus "Lysanius" in §§ 16, 17, 

§ 4 (Page 113, 1. 22f.) Constantine and Italy. A line has 
evidently dropped out of the exemplar from which N 
was copied. For Italy (nCil^.rtf') N has '■"•■'\ # 1 f* J but 
both (5 1 and ($ a mention Italy, and this alone makes 
sense, as we learn from § 39 that Constantine is just on 
the point of setting out to take possession of Rome. 
The name of Maxentius does not seem to have reached 
Edessa. In any case the words of § 4 presuppose the 
state of things before the Edicts of Toleration, not that 
of the later 'persecution' of Licinius. 

ID "K 

O 3 

§ 8 (Page 1 14, 1. 27) Into the courtyard. Here N has 
pe'AvtTa, which makes no sense, ( r » ! has ttpvtfliw (= r£oo&a), 
and <& 2 has x«t« tgS dxcu (= K9yaa) : both guesses. I 
have conjectured ntffrn^a : see 2 Mace xni 15 (Syr.). 



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§ 19 (Page 119, 1. 15) The Emperors' Festival-Day 
(rdsAsa:! f^sirc'). From the context this is clearly the ist 
of Elul, i.e. Sept. 1. The decree to arrest Habbib is 
issued in August, Habbib is examined as soon as he has 



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NOTES TO HABBIB. I?/ 

given himself up. But that day was the r£Axsa:i f^n^r*', 
and, no delay being indicated, Habbib is tried and 
sentenced on Sept. 2. Caesar-worship on the first day of 
the month, and especially on the first day of the month 
with which the year began, is discussed by C. H. Turner 
in Stadia Biblica n, p. 113. 

The word t<tui< is otherwise unknown. On p. 33, 
note, and on p. 86, I have suggested that it corresponds 
to the DTK in c Aboda Zara I 1. Possibly we should 
emend it into r^vK" and regard it as a transliteration 
of hpA, i.e. y\ iepct yftipx. 

§ 20 {Page i2i, L 3) "creaked", lit. "spoke" (oiAs*). 
This odd phrase occurs again in Skarbel: in fact, Habbib 
§ 20, short as it is, very well illustrates the whole pro- 
blem of the literary affiliation of the Edessene Acta 
Martyrum. While Habbib is hanging to be torn with 
the iron "comb", they drag or pull him about (^.^aJfaso): 
the same word is used of the treatment given to Shmona 
and Guria (S. & G. § 27). He is left hanging a long while 
(r<r&\tQ r^icUg) : so also Sharbel hangs an long while 
(ASD u 26). He is left hanging, until his shoulder- 
blades creaked (oUsa) : so also Sharbel at his execution 
is put into a vice, until the bones of his joints creaked 
(ASD rrta 4). 

It is obvious that such coincidences cannot be acci- 
dental and that some literary connexion must subsist 
between the three documents. The difference between 
them is this, that whereas in Skm&na & Guria and in 
Habbib the terms used for the several tortures always 
have some show of reason, in Skarbel they do not seem 

23 



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178 NOTES TO HABB1B. 

mechanically imagined at all. In the present case, there 
is some point in saying that a man's joints creaked by 
being over-strained, but none at all by compressing 
them in a vice. 

§ 35 (Page 125, 1. 51.) The ''Gate of the Arches". For 
the situation of this Gate, see p. 37 and Joshua Stylites 
% 27. The exact meaning of the name (rtflfr&i «li_i<^) 
is uncertain, but very likely it was derived, as in the 
case of the Sundial Gate, from some architectural feature. 
None of the Gates of Edessa seem to have taken their 
name in ancient times from the place to which they led. 

Nothing is known for certain about c Abshelama bar 
Abgar, or about his cemetery. What the Edessene 
Chronicle calls "the cemetery of Edessa" was not built 
till 324 (§ xm). According to the Edessene tradition a 
certain i AbsheIama succeeded Palut and preceded Bar- 
samya as Bishop of Edessa, but he is not elsewhere 
called a son of Abgar. 

The name f<!saiza^. is no doubt a contraction of 
mb® 12V j just as TiojraoK' is a contraction of tPCtP HON. 
Unfortunately we do not know the pronunciation of the 
name of the God X0btt> . <5 2 omits the name here alto- 
gether, (5 1 appears to have originally had 'AfivsAfAxir. A 
more genuinely vernacular transcription into Greek is to 
be found in Eusebius De Mart. Pal. x, where we read 
of nirfCff xtntvT>j/T, i xxt 'AipixafA6<F, the name in the 
Syriac being rdSQ lgaa , {Cureton, p. t\). This may be 
taken to indicate that there was a vowel between the 
A. and the to, and that therefore the name should be 
written "Abslilama, rather than z Abshalma. 



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NOTES TO HABBIB. 1 79 

§ 38a (Page 126, 1. 15 f.) The Procession. Shmona and 
Guria were buried where they were executed, Habbib's 
body is carried to the grave of Shmona and Guria. It 
is evident therefore that Habbib was burnt a good deal 
nearer to the Gate of the Arches than Beth Alah Kikla 
is. See further p. 42, for details of the topography. 

§ 40 {Page 127, 1. 27) Domitian. The mention of Domi- 
tian is very odd. Had it been Trajan or Decius, it 
might have been held to refer to the martyrdom of 
Sharbel and the confession of Barsamya, according either 
to the traditional or the historically probable date of 
those events. But Domitian Iks altogether outside the 
ecclesiastical history of Edessa, which only came under 
the Roman dominion after 1 16 A.D. Further, the con- 
struction of this sentence is very confused in Codex N, 
which is our only authority for all that follows the first 
sentence in § 40. I imagine that the mention of "Domi- 
tian" is nothing more than a scribe's error. In Habbib 
§ r, Diocletian's Persecution is called the first (or, former) 
persecution, and I venture to think it probable that in 
this passage oocviii^m (0001*^00.1) is a miswriting of 
<yfl' jAnoi , i.e. Diocletianus. In some Syriac hands "sa 
is not unlike la. The "former martyrs" will then refer 

to Shmona and Guria. 
s 

Cureton {ASD 1S9) notices the possibility that Dio- 
cletian should be read, but rejects the suggestion. 

§40 (Page 128, 1. 10) The Afartyrs' dust. Professor 
v. Dobschutz (p. 99) suggests that the words "may the 
dust .... crowned" are an interpolation , referring to a 
Staubkuit, so that the words here translated "may He 



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l8o NOTES TO HABBIB. 

pardon me". I venture to think that the words are 
genuine, and that Theophilus expresses the hope that 
"the dust of these Martyrs' feet" which fell on him as 
he accompanied them to the place of their execution 
may itself act as a protective charm for him in the 
Day of Judgement. It was at the execution of Shmona 
and Guria that he was converted : the dust of the 
Martyrs' feet would be for a testimony against the 
persecutors (Mk vi 1 1 ; also Pistis Sophia 273), but it 
would protect the repentant Theophilus. Such dust from 
the skin of a Holy man was called in Syriac k'.Hjj, 
i.e. tt a mercy". 

§ 40 (Page 128,11. 15 — 17) The 27 Questions, A kind of 
parallel to this curious summary of the trial of Habbib 
is found in one of the two MSS used by Cureton for 
Sharbel. This MS is B.M. Add. 14645, the same Codex 
N from which the text of Habbib is taken. After des- 
cribing the burial of Sharbel (ASD, p. 61 and also p. 185) 
the document goes on to say: 

"I wrote these acts on paper, I, Marinus and Ana- 
tolus, the notaries; and we placed them in the archives 
of the city, where the charters of the kings are placed. 
[And that which was spoken by the Judge, those who 
stood in the Judge's presence wrote down ; but all the 
rest, which took place outside the tribunal the Sharrirs 
of the city wrote down, and they went in and made it 
known to the Judge, and he, according as he heard 
from them, gave orders in the legal manner, agreeably 
to the custom of the ordinances and laws of old. Thus 
these Acts were written, and deposited in the chamber 
of ancient records. But there are fifty-two questions 



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NOTES TO HABBIB, l8l 

which the Judge asked Sharbel ; and then they gave 
against him the bitter sentence of death, which is widely 
apart from the laws of the Romans, and from the sen- 
tence of their edicts. But this transaction of the Con- 
fession of Sharbel took place in the first consulate of 
Commodus and Cerealis]". 

The passage in brackets is found only in Codex N. 

Two questions call for solution: (l) whether these 
paragraphs in Habbib and Sharbel are part of the genuine 
text or an addition made by the scribe of N ; and (2) 
whether either of them , if genuine, throws any light 
upon the sources employed by the writers. 

1-1 

The answers to these questions must be largely a 
matter of impression. I venture to suggest that the 

rsi 

paragraph in Sharbel is genuine, i.e. that it is part of 

the regular text of that work, and that its absence from 

Cureton's Codex A (B.M. Add. 14644) is due to cur- 

tailment. It is exactly similar in general characteristics 

to the rest of the Acts of Sharbel. The Consulship of 

Commodus and Cerealis comes from the beginning of 
- 

Bars&mya, the description of the duties of the Sharrirs 

comes from the same place and from the earlier part 

of Habbib 40 (see above, on Habbib 3, p. 174), and I 

think the mention of the 52 Questions put to Sharbel 

is imitated from the mention of the 27 Questions put 

to Habbib. That the paragraph in Sharbel has any 

special historical value is of course out of the question, 

but it seems to me to be of a piece with the rest of 

the work, and not to be the note of a transcriber. 

The note in Habbib seems to me rather different in 

character. It comes in too oddly at the end to be the 

work of a transcriber writing a kind of Masoretic Note, 

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1 82 NOTES TO HABBIB. 

and yet it can hardly be an integral part of the Mar- 
tyrdom, for the preceding paragraph is the peroration 
of the work. The suggestion made on p. 24 of this 
volume, that this curious sentence is part of Theophilus's 
rough notes made in compiling his narrative, is a mere 
conjecture, but it seems to me a not improbable one. 
Shmona and Guria does not appeal to documents, except 
for Shmona's words §§ 37, 38. The author professes to 
have seen the executions and to have written his nar- 
rative at once. Habbib, on the other hand, does not 
profess to have been written at once and it does appeal 
to documents. Is not this in accordance both with internal 
evidence and historical probability ? Shmona and Guria 
bears the stronger marks of authenticity. Moreover it 
professes to have been written during the persecution. 
Habbib, on the other hand, was written "when the per- 
secution had relaxed a little", and when therefore it 
might be possible for a person connected with the ad- 
ministration, such as Theophilus seems to have been, to 
have looked at the records of the trial. He may have 
seen some private report on Christian feeling in the 
town, which he magnifies into the Acta of the " Sharrirs\ 
and he may have found this short account of the trial 
in the official Register. Out of these, and his memories 
of the burning of the Martyr, he then composed the 
narrative which we have. 

This, of course, is imaginative reconstruction rather 
than scientific criticism, but some explanation of this 
literature is needed which will do justice to the marks 
of genuineness in it, as well as to the occasional incon- 
sistencies and exaggerations. 



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NOTES TO EUPHEMIA. 



Most of the observations that I had to make upon 
Euphemia will be found above, pp. 70 — 77 for the text, 
and pp. 48- — 65 for the subject matter. I add here four 
detached observations for which no other satisfactory 
place offered itself. 

§ r (Page 129, 1, 5), also § 34 (Page 145, 1. 24) and § 46 
(Page 153, I. 8): see Syriac text XPi6, .ito 16, .1^. 5, 

In these three places we have evidently the same 
Syriac phrase. There is no variant in § 1 : both L and 
P have >cnoiui\ t<i*=^ sai- and this is also the text 



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of P in § 34 and § 46. But both in § 34 and in § 46 L 
has toncvLuii for »cocu.wHA , thereby assimilating the 
phrase to the Peshitta text of Psalm cxlv 19. The 
Greek gives no help : in § 1 it follows the Greek Psalter 
[HhvifAOL tuv Qo$Gvpt.ivo2v aurbv 7rGiy{j£i) and paraphrases in 
§ 34 and § 46. 

There can be little doubt that the reading of P is to 
be preferred, and that the scribe of L was influenced 
by the familiar words of the Psalm. For the idiom see 
the Life of Simeon StyHtes {Assemani II 340 — Bedjan 
IV 611): Elijah prayed and the Lord "did for him a 
pleasure". Other examples are collected in Payne Smith, 



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184 NOTES TO EUPHEMIA. 

§ 1 (Page 1 29, 1. 6 f.) The quotation from 1 Peter V 7. 
This quotation occurs in both Syriac MSS and agrees 
verbally with the Peshitta: short as it is, it contains a 
reading found nowhere but in Syriac, viz. the substitution 
of 'God* for 'He'. It is assigned in L to 'the divine 
Apostle Paul', but P knows better and leaves the name 
of Paul out. The whole quotation is omitted in the 
Greek, probably because the unfamiliar reading *God' 
together with the mistaken ascription to 'Paul' made the 
passage unidentifiable to the translator. 

As explained above, p. 57, it is hardly possible to 
date the first writing down of Eup hernia before the death 
of Rabbula (435), and by that time the present Peshitta 
New Testament, which included 1 Peter, was well esta- 
blished in Edessa. But perhaps a trace of the compara- 
tive unfamiliarity to Syriac ears of this part of new the 
Canon may be detected in the substitution of 'Paul' for 
Teter'. 



§ 4 (Page 131, 1. 4) The Feeder ati. The Syriac is 
reiAW_=3 (so L): P reads rd&ur£a , i.e. a plural, but the 
word is a transliteration of fioyfaiz, and the only other 
passage where it seems to occur in Syriac supports the 
singular. This passage is Bedjan III 298, (Sergius and 
Bacchus) : the prisoners were to be transported from one 
city to another QQtjaa&^i re*A»nC<x»= , by a ftoySax of 
the Txfytr. What this means in technical language is not 
very easy to say; the ancient Latin version (Acta SS. for 
Oct. 7) says per singula officia ciuitatum. My colleague 
Professor Bury tells me that the Ttk^iT would be the 
staff of a provincial Governor, and also referred me to 
the use of VotCix^ fioyfaia in Malalas (e.g. 369 and 374}. 



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NOTES TO EUrHEMlA. 1 85 

In 369 we read that the Governor of Arttioch sent a 
Tct$ix,}} {3oyi$ttx to fetch the corpse of Simeon Stylites, 

From the context in Eupkemia § 4 it is evident that 
the r£&tr£a (lioyfaix) was composed of Goths in Roman 
pay. The word is not used by Joshua Stylites. As noticed 
on p. 52, the Greek altogether leaves out this reference 
to Byzantine military organization. 

§ 41 (Page 150, 1. 22 = Syriac text n£fc»$). The three 
names Shmona and Guria and Habbib are here voca- 
lized in L 

■a>T3,»o n&iaVo n£icu»x. 

This apparently indicates a pronunciation 
Shmana, Gurya, Ha(b)blv. 
On the forms in which Habbib appears in Greek, see 
v. Dobschuts, p. 230. The other two Saints become 
2apt,uvx<r and Tovpixtr. It is clear from Syriac poetry that 
both Shmona and Guria [Gur-ya] are each words of 
two syllables, not of three, but so far as I know there 
is very little direct evidence to determine whether the 
first syllable was pronounced or u. According to the 
Jacobite system of vocalisation every becomes u, so 
that no help could be looked for from Codex P, The 
Greek evidence and L agree as to Gatria, but they ap- 
pear to differ as to Shmona (-zma). I do not know with 
what vowel jjctoax.,. the mother of the seven Macca- 
baean Martyrs (2 Mace vn), ought to be pronounced. 



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INDEX. 



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Psalms 
(Eng. numeration) 

xxx 6, no, 143 

xxxiv 19, 129 

LXXVII if., I43 

cxxxv 6, 143 
cxlv i8f,, 129 

CXLVI 4, 91 

S. Matthew 

v 37- 97 
x 29, 100 
x 32 f., 93 
xx vn 50, i26n. 

S. Mark 
VI ir, 180 
ix 48, 96 

S. Luke 
xvi 22, 97 
XXIII 54, 10 in. 

1 Peter 

V J s T29, 184 



Romans 
viii 18, 123 

3 Corinthians, 25n. 



c Aboda Zara, 3311,, 86n. 

Barhebraeus, 35, 37, 66ff., 
161 

Barsamya, 18, 32, ii7n., 
174, 181 

Chronicle, Edessene, 35, 
37, 41, 58n., 163, 178 
Rahmani's, 3Sf., 381"., 164 

Ephraim, Testament, 43 

Eusebius, Martyrs of Pa- 
lestine, 9 in., 164 

Florus & Laurus, n, 6 in. 

Ignatius, 83 

Irenaeus of Sirmium, 167 

Jacob of Serug, 40, 85 

Joshua Stylites, 35, 37,40f., 

43» 58» 59^ 168 
Kalendars, 163, 165, 176 
Liturgies, 82n. 



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Pistis Sophia, 180 
Priscillian, 8211. 
Rahmani, see Chronicle 
Scillitan Martyrs, 11 
Sergius & Bacchus, 184 
Sharbcl, 136"., 19, 258"., 88, 

9511., 174, 180 
Silvia-Etheria, 154 
William of Tyre, 6711., roof. 



INDEX. 187 

r<4»ia 176 

r<":u» (rejoice) J2 
rCiciti 26 






KbMir*' i69f. 
(Cnior^ 169?. 
i**-* 33> S6> 176 

vviK' 169^ 

i^Airtfa l84f. 
rt fm t.n 4u= see K^oxi 
r<4u"to 176 

t<=aoooai^ 169 
..oA&ttii 72n. 



tefcHaaJL 1 84 

A\» (of bones) 177 f. 
re&x&l 40 

ptflVt2Ltt> i66f. 



r^-lue 1-"- (with A) 183 

rtfaabttta 178 
^awk 23 

K^*T!iin 17, 23, 86, 

172 f. 

r<&lCU»x. 4 in. 
T*f-i<xsni~ 185 
i^i/ix, i73f., 180 



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Cttiair<S,i\SiCv t-daia) ^Owao ,• f<&.Vw t-CJlreli*. f<faoU 5 
. Q&ouiLki^& icnaAaino f<T-^A« on t«^" «&.TiA 
»cpcuij.alo K'iajL. ocn .Tsa^i r<Lruir^ Klais:u» aciuot 

,* 0O3JA3 tri_»A\ir<' rdfrulMigPa GOT VWtr^ rO^fiOt'i&l 
diaA.i vyrc' _<3hcA K'AvvwjAi la^.QD&ii ix'wM.-W ndka 
. oajj aAti ndJUASa gtu&uK* rtf&\Li-u=d "* i ^ v Gu. . Klibxn 

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»oo JiSk »cn K&OJ»L.ET)a ^^9 . &i&lu&ULr<' rua rtLlr^ 

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rtlio nticna&i ctlA iVcvonn . cai-Tr^A rfi^^Ai V^cno 
aVal* »m iwiiurC ^_«^ t m <■ . r-fliujL.i craAi^acrA jL» 
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10 cnaui.aA »mA,&flor«b t*»&\. \a »- \\f* m-\ t<ncAnx,a 
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• WHK 1 a-Si ml iV-t cajaooa nfinaA mn^rtfti . rfix.A\,i 
*__j-M a* f tf a L BauA r^W . .cnoAx^r^ t/si-=a rdlm.i 
AaaCaa Aurcfci rc&u*:iasajkiaj r^cucai AaoJw r^taJi 

15 Auiax. r*A r^Ard '. pa^en ^rd ^n r^i\Al , m\ AuK' 

vy*rf rd.i-ii-.DQ3 mla. Q0amiii^&\ cnA kU&jm iii,a 
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20 .■ mi K&uii cam cWa^.io ,* rdSKli Aipa cnAAndx. 
pcLbv= mi »&urV m&>£tms A\,tm : -^^\ a^ f^li-pf.io 

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r^vi-^s ,_»:ucn . rdicru* A^- poi-Q r^ciA^a Aiocn - 
-. Aincn rdXfaAi ^-Acn r^irrfjys *■! a& ■** ■. rdax3.T«ia 
OAO . on \ \flai rdk_=Jo^. ^ Qcnl.a.3 BXJEA) ,&A>_=i^< 
cnAli ,jnopi& , rf.-tnoito 3m.=.i p^.^tA\ ^sn a^ rdsoli 
&r>n n't a . cfA tiuitt'i *n:r_5a ftcn kS-^A* tSa SklrucK 
»CP rs'Aia.l^ijiCn cnili^ Ai. jJLfcAJ&P . Stasia Jfvn.£^La ]0 
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rc'i-to wizA M.l^Air*' •. A& tt. ,i_^ r^i-^Ai -_*i ocb 
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from Codex L (B.M. Add. 14649), foil. \l\r — i22z>. It 
is also- extant In B.M. Add. 12174 (dated A.D, 1197), 
but the variations did not seem to me worth recording. 



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J = Cod. Jacobitarum Hierosolymitarum , saec. XV, 
edited by Rahmani. 

Where the text as here printed differs from J, the 
reading of J is given in all cases in the foot-notes: for 
a justification of these departures the reader is referred 
to the Notes on the Translation, 

Words and passages are enclosed in brackets when, 
in the opinion of the present editor, it is unlikely that 
they formed part of the original narrative. 



LU 



N = Cod. Nitriensis, B.M. Add. 14645, dated 936 A.D. 

L — Cod, Nitriensis nunc Londoniensis, B.M. Add. 

14649, saec. IX. 
P == Cod. Parisiensis, B.N. Fonds syriaque 234, saec. 

XIIL 
Unless otherwise stated, the text printed is that of L. 
All variations of P are recorded in the footnotes. 



o a 

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In all three parts (5 (Si 1 , © 2 ) signify select readings 
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